By Cait Etherington January 22, 2018
Whether you’re an instructional designer, researcher, or educator, it is important to stay on top of new developments in the field. Here are eLearningInside News’ recommendations for five new books on eLearning and ed tech. If these titles have a common theme, it is certainly change and uncertainty. From a critical investigation about how and when to start feeding children a digital diet to technical and theoretical discussions on AI and machine learning, these new titles serve as yet another reminder of the massive disruptions currently under way in K-12 education, higher education, and training.
Published in mid December 2017, this new edited collection by UK-based researchers Kieron Sheehy and Andrew Holliman explores a series of questions on many people’s minds: When should children begin their digital diet? Does the use of new technology hinder or enhance children’s literacy development? Do new technologies give children new abilities or undermine their skills and identities? Are learners safe in modern online educational spaces? Whether you’re an early childhood educator, parent or just a concerned digital citizen, Education and New Technologies, available from Routledge, is a a great place to begin exploring what’s at stake as children engage with digital technologies at an increasingly young age.
In October 2017, Springer published Matthew Montebello’s AI Injected e-Learning. This is a book explores how artificial intelligence (AI) is tranforming elearning in three key ways: crowdsourcing via social networks; user profiling through machine learning techniques; and personal learning portfolios using learning analytics. Although the book is primarily intended for education technologists and elearning researchers, the book is introductory enough to be accessible to anyone interested in learning more about AI-based eLearning techniques from machine learning to crowdsourcing to learner profiling.
While Transactional Distance and Adaptive Learning may sound like a highly esoteric work, this new book by Farhad Saba and Rick L. Shearer actually tackles an increasingly important issue in education and training: the shift from one-size-fits-all models of learning to learner-centered forms of education. In essence, the theory of transactional distance (TTD) offers a unique analytical and planning foundation to begin the transition from mass instructional approaches to what the authors characterize as “dynamic and transformational futures that focus on each individual learner.” Whether you’re an administrator exploring next-generation technologies to transform your institution, an educator looking to be on the cutting edge of tomorrow’s classroom, or an educational technologist, Transactional Distance and Adaptive Learning offers a thorough overview of the hardware, software, and systems that are primed to change how we learn, teach, and encounter knowledge.