The Digital Textbook in South Korea: Opportunities and Challenges

  • Hyeonseon JeongEmail author
  • Amie Kim
Part of the Education Innovation Series book series (EDIN)


This chapter reviews the literature that discusses the hopes and concerns related to the implementation of digital textbooks in Korean schools. The digital textbook developed in Korea is a unique digital learning platform that includes both the learning management system and digitised learning resources. It has been developed as a part of ‘Smart Education’ policies planned by the Korean government to meet the needs of twenty-first century learners. Review of the research shows that despite the practical difficulties (e.g. challenges of device procurement), the implementation of digital textbooks has ample potentials to bring about the shift in education paradigm from teacher-led education to student-centred one. However, this chapter warns against a technologically deterministic approach. The implementation of technology itself does not guarantee the paradigm shift. Consistent technical support, development of learning contents and pedagogy for digital textbooks, and media literate teachers and students are amongst the many factors that are necessary to realize the potentials of digital textbooks. This chapter concludes by pointing out that the digital textbook project is not a one-off implementation of a new technology, but rather an attempt to incorporate the new media culture into the school setting to create changes in the teaching and learning culture.


Digital textbook SMART education policy Teaching and learning culture Education paradigm shift 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Singapore 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Korean EducationGyeongin National University of EducationAnyangSouth Korea
  2. 2.BK21Plus Institute of Future Education DesignSeoul National UniversitySeoulSouth Korea

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