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Educational Psychology Review

, Volume 14, Issue 3, pp 331–351 | Cite as

Research into Practice: Current Trends in Educational Technology Research: The Study of Learning Environments

  • William Winn
Article

Abstract

Educational technology research has passed through a number of stages, focusing, in turn, on the content to be learned, the format of instructional messages, and the interaction between computers and students. The field is now concerned with the study of learning in complete, complex, and interactive learning environments. These environments allow both the simulation of experiences that students might have in the real world and also the creation of compelling experiences that cannot normally be experienced directly. Learning environments also often allow students to communicate their own ideas with the use of a variety of symbol systems. These environments are also frequently inhabited by more than one person, making learning within them a social activity where learning is distributed among both people and artifacts. Finally, these learning environments are complex. Studying how they contribute to learning therefore requires research methods other than controlled experiments. This paper reviews research on learning environments to give both an historical perspective on educational technology research and a selective view of the current state of the discipline. It concludes by identifying implications for both practice and future research.

educational technology learning research learning environments virtual reality computer-based learning 

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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • William Winn
    • 1
  1. 1.College of EducationUniversity of WashingtonSeattle

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