July 2024, Volume 27, Issue 3

Special Issue on "Preparing for the future: Cultivating self-directed learners with technology in the K-12 context

Guest Editor(s):  Chun Lai, Olga Viberg and Chunping Zheng

Full Length Articles

Nitesh Kumar Jha, Plaban Kumar Bhowmik and Kaushal Kumar Bhagat

Nitesh Kumar Jha

Advanced Technology and Development Centre, Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur, India // nitesh.jha1092@gmail.com

Plaban Kumar Bhowmik

G.S    Sanyal School of Telecommunications, Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur, India // plaban@gmail.com

Kaushal Kumar Bhagat

Advanced Technology and Development Centre, Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur, India // kkntnu@hotmail.com


The aim of this study is to provide a current synthesis of Online Inquiry-Based Learning (OIBL) systems that use argumentation as a pedagogy. Data were collected from three databases: Scopus, Web of Science, and ERIC. The present review synthesized the findings of 73 studies from 2010 to June 2023. A qualitative content analysis was conducted to examine the inquiry-based systems regarding design features that support argumentation and learning outcomes. Four design features were identified: engaging students in unique and meaningful topics, providing visualization and scaffolding tools, collaborative inquiry in groups, and sharing and critiquing arguments. Most studies provided scaffolding and visualization support, while a few allowed students to engage in unique and meaningful topics. Most studies measured higher-level cognitive outcomes in contrast to lower-level outcomes. Future studies need to design systems for a more diverse population of students with improved collaboration support. In addition, this review identified a need to focus more on interdisciplinary topics rather than natural science.   


Argumentation, Inquiry-based learning, Online argumentation, Online inquiry, Online inquiry-based learning system 

Cite as:Jha, N. K., Bhowmik, P. K., & Bhagat, K. K. (2024). Online inquiry-based learning systems for argumentation: A systematic review. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 1-28. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).RP01
Submitted February 7, 2023; Revised September 21, 2023; Accepted October 21, 2023; Published November 29, 2023

Victor Law, Manuel J. Jimenez, Liza Kittinger and Barbara Lopez

Victor Law

University of New Mexico, USA // vlaw@unm.edu

Manuel J. Jimenez

University of New Mexico, USA // mjimenez.abq@gmail.com

Liza Kittinger

University of New Mexico, USA // lizakittinger@gmail.com

Barbara Lopez

University of New Mexico, USA // barbislop@gmail.com


The popularity of digital badges has been accelerated in recent years. Advocates of digital badges suggest their use may improve students’ motivation and achievement, but existing empirical studies have failed to show consistent results. Furthermore, to date, no meta-analysis has been conducted on the topic of digital badges. Given this gap, the purpose of this study is to systematically evaluate the effect of digital badges on student motivation and learning achievement. Our results suggest that digital badges have a significant impact on learning achievement, but the effect on motivation is inconclusive. In addition, moderator analyses were conducted to test the extent to which badge visibility, grade level, content area, and length of intervention influence the effects on motivation and learning achievement. The study provides an early summary of empirical digital badge research -- an area still in its infancy. The results of this meta-analysis provide a foundation for the future of digital badge design and development research. Furthermore, our results can inform the practice of the implementation of digital badges in that digital badges can have stronger effects in the higher education context, with STEM subjects, and for a medium duration of one to nine weeks.


Digital badge, Motivation, Achievement, Meta-analysis

Cite as:Law, V., Jimenez, M. J., Kittinger, L., & Lopez, B. (2024). A meta-analysis of digital badges in learning environments in educational settings. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 29-45. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).RP02
Submitted November 13, 2021; Revised August 28, 2023; Accepted September 6, 2023; Published February 26, 2024

Hui Shan Lo, Yung Ji Sher, Jon Chao Hong, Hsu Kai Chang and Ting Fang Wu

Hui Shan Lo

Graduate Institute of Rehabilitation Counseling, National Taiwan Normal University, Taiwan // sunnylo519@gmail.com

Yung Ji Sher

Graduate Institute of Rehabilitation Counseling, National Taiwan Normal University, Taiwan // siaa@ntnu.edu.tw

Jon Chao Hong

Institute for Research Excellence in Learning Sciences, National Taiwan Normal University, Taiwan // hongjc@ntnu.edu.tw

Hsu Kai Chang

Graduate Institute of Rehabilitation Counseling, National Taiwan Normal University, Taiwan // 61017010E@ntnu.edu.tw

Ting Fang Wu

Graduate Institute of Rehabilitation Counseling, National Taiwan Normal University, Taiwan // tfwu@ntnu.edu.tw


Virtual Reality (VR) holds promise in vocational education and benefits individuals with disabilities. This study aims to assess the effectiveness of a blended learning approach using VR and traditional instruction in teaching car detailing skills to students with intellectual disabilities (ID). This study utilized a group comparison research design, employing a pre- and posttest approach. The participants consisted of 21 students with ID. The blended learning group received the regular school-based course (4 hours/week) and additional VR sessions, while the traditional learning group only received the regular school-based course. Both the blended learning group and the traditional learning group completed assessments before and after the intervention. The results indicated that the blended learning group students demonstrated significant improvement from the pretest to the posttest, while the traditional learning group students did not. In conclusion, the findings suggest that blended learning was more effective in terms of enhancing understanding of the car washing sequence than the traditional learning.


Blended learning, Individuals with intellectual disabilities, Car detailing skills

Cite as:Lo, H. S., Sher, Y. J., Hong, J. C., Chang, H. K., & Wu, T. F. (2024). The effects of blended learning on the car detailing skills of students with intellectual disabilities. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 46-60. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).RP03
Submitted August 2, 2023; Revised November 6, 2023; Accepted December 11, 2023; Published February 26, 2024

Rwitajit Majumdar

Academic Center for Computing and Media Studies, Kyoto University, Japan // Research and Education Institute for Semiconductors and Informatics, Kumamoto University, Japan // majumdar@kumamoto-u.ac.jp

Huiyong Li

Academic Center for Computing and Media Studies, Kyoto University, Japan // li.huiyong.2t@kyoto-u.ac.jp 

Yuanyuan Yang

Graduate School of Informatics, Kyoto University, Japan // 44.yangoo@gmail.com

Hiroaki Ogata

Academic Center for Computing and Media Studies, Kyoto University, Japan // ogata.hiroaki.3e@kyoto-u.ac.jp 


Self-direction skill (SDS) is an essential 21st-century skill that can help learners be independent and organized in their quest for knowledge acquisition. While some studies considered learners from higher education levels as the target audience, providing opportunities to start the SDS practice by K12 learners is still rare. Further, practicing such skills requires a concrete context and scaffolding during the skill acquisition. This article introduces the Goal Oriented Active Learner (GOAL) system that facilitates SDS acquisition in learners utilizing daily activities as context. The GOAL architecture integrates learning logs from online environments and physical activity logs from wearable trackers to provide a data-rich environment for the learners to acquire and practice their SDS. The GOAL users follow DAPER, a five-phase process model, to utilize the affordances in the system while practicing SDS. We implemented the GOAL system at a K12 public institution in Japan in 2019. Learners used the online environments for extensive reading and smartwatches for tracking walking and sleeping activities. This study analyzes detailed interaction patterns in GOAL while learners planned and monitored their self-directed actions. The results illustrate the strategies for DAPER behaviors that emerge in different activity contexts. We discuss the potentials and challenges of this technology ecosystem that connects learners’ learning logs and physical activity logs, specifically in the K12 context in Japan and, more generally, from the learning analytics research perspective to provide a context to practice SDS.


Learning and Evidence Analytics Framework (LEAF), Evidence-based education, Learning analytics, K-12 education, eBook, Smartwatch

Cite as:Majumdar, R., Li, H., Yang, Y., & Ogata, H. (2024). GOAL - A data-rich environment to foster self-direction skills across learning and physical contexts. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 61-82. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).RP04
Submitted February 1, 2023; Revised August 25, 2023; Accepted September 7, 2023; Published March 18, 2024

I-Cheng Lin, Shu-Hsuan Chang, Pin-Chien Liu, Po-Jen Kuo and Kuo Chia Chung

I-Cheng Lin

Department of Finance, National Changhua University of Education, Taiwan // icliniclin@cc.ncue.edu.tw

Shu-Hsuan Chang

Department of Industrial Education and Technology, National Changhua University of Education, Changhua County, Taiwan // shc@cc.ncue.edu.tw

Pin-Chien Liu

Department of Industrial Education and Technology, National Changhua University of Education, Changhua County, Taiwan // d0731009@gm.ncue.edu.tw

Po-Jen Kuo

Department of Industrial Education and Technology, National Changhua University of Education, Changhua County, Taiwan // pc7938@icloud.com

Kuo Chia Chung

Department of Mathematics, National Kaohsiung Normal University of Education, Kaohsiung County, Taiwan // abc0919303857@gmail.com


Creativity has been proven to be a core competitiveness in the twenty-first century. Although many experimental studies have confirmed that game learning can improve creativity, some studies have contrary results. Currently, there are very few, and primarily incomplete, meta-analyses integrating experimental studies of educational gaming’s impact on creativity. The current meta-analysis included 29 articles from 2002 to 2022, containing 116 effect sizes and 4,159 student subjects. The results showed that the overall mean weighted effect size was 0.84, indicating that game learning significantly positively affected students’ creativity compared with non-game learning. In addition, the mean effect size was moderated by digital content, teaching strategies, educational stages, publication sources, and class size but not by patterns, disciplines, and experiment duration. Accordingly, this study provides new insights and suggestions on improving creativity via game learning design and implementation as a reference for researchers, teachers, game designers, and developers in the field of creativity.


Game learning, Gamification, Game-based learning, Digital game-based learning, Creativity, Meta-analysis

Cite as:Lin, I.-C., Chang, S.-H., Liu, P.-C., Kuo, P.-J., & Chung, K. C. (2024). Exploring the effectiveness and moderators of game learning on creativity enhancement: A meta-analysis. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 83-101. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).RP05
Submitted May 30, 2023; Revised November 17, 2023; Accepted December 20, 2023; Published March 24, 2024

Yun Wen

National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore // yun.wen@nie.edu.sg 

Yanjie Song

Education University of Hong Kong, China // ysong@eduhk.hk

Guat Poh Aw

National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore // guatpoh.aw@nie.edu.sg

Hock Huan Goh

National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore // hockhuan.goh@nie.edu.sg

Yingjiang Zheng

Academic of Singapore Teachers, Singapore // zheng_yingjiang@schools.gov.sg

Yanyan Wang

Ministry of Education, Singapore // wang_yanyan@moe.gov.sg


Existing studies have evidenced that mobile-assisted vocabulary learning, which allows students to create artefacts and engage in productive skills, can help them in vocabulary learning. However, there remains little research and validated approaches for designing seamless vocabulary learning experiences for young learners. In this paper, a seamless vocabulary learning system was specifically designed for young learners. The study involved three classes of primary 2 students to investigate the learning effectiveness of seamless vocabulary learning, with a focus on analyzing student-generated artefacts. The results validated the effectiveness of seamless vocabulary learning for young learners, emphasizing the importance of strengthening the connection between home-based learning and classroom-based learning. The study also indicated the pivotal role of providing students with opportunities to improve their artefacts constantly across different learning contexts.


Seamless learning, Vocabulary learning, Chinese as second language learning, Primary school

Cite as:Wen, Y., Song, Y., Aw, G. P., Goh, H. H., Zheng, Y., & Wang, Y. (2024). Investigating seamless vocabulary learning for young learners: ARCH for bridging home-based learning and classroom-based learning. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 102-113. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).RP06
Submitted November 24, 2022; Revised October 3, 2023; Accepted January 16, 2024; Published March 24, 2024

Mindfulness mitigates the adverse effects of problematic smartphone use on academic self-efficacy: A structural equation modelling analysis

Sandy C. Li

Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong SAR, China // sandyli@hkbu.edu.hk

Jackie W. W. Chan

Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong SAR, China // chanwunw@hkbu.edu.hk

Andrew K. F. Lui

Queensland University of Technology, Australia // ak.lui@qut.edu.au

Ming Lui

University of Roehampton, London, United Kingdom // ming.lui@roehampton.ac.uk

Raymond W. P. Wong

Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong SAR, China // wongwp@vtc.edu.hk


While prior research has shown higher mindfulness is associated with lower problematic smartphone use (PSU), the contexts of these studies were not related to education or student performance. As such, whether and how mindfulness can reduce the adverse effects of PSU on academic self-efficacy remains unknown. This study proposed a model for testing whether and how mindfulness exerts its effects on PSU and academic self-efficacy through different pathways in which self-esteem, academic motivation, and smartphone time serve as mediators. To this end, a questionnaire survey, comprising Smartphone Addiction Scale (Short Version), Mindful Attention Awareness Scale, Short Academic Motivation Scale, Rosenberg Self-esteem Scale, and Educational Self-efficacy Scale, was administered to a sample of 821 university students from Hong Kong during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2022. The findings of this study show that mindfulness reduces the adverse effects of PSU on academic self-efficacy. Four different mediation pathways were identified, showing how the effects of mindfulness on PSU and academic self-efficacy are mediated through self-esteem, academic amotivation, and smartphone time. Specifically, mindfulness has a direct negative effect on PSU and a direct positive effect on academic self-efficacy. Mindfulness also exerts indirect effects on PSU mediated serially by self-esteem, academic amotivation, and smartphone time.


Smartphone time, Self-esteem, Academic intrinsic motivation, Academic amotivation, Academic self-efficacy

Cite as:Li, S. C., Chan, J. W. W., Lui, A. K. F., Lui, M., & Wong, R. W. P. (2024). Mindfulness mitigates the adverse effects of problematic smartphone use on academic self-efficacy: A structural equation modelling analysis. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 114-133. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).RP07
Submitted March 23, 2023; Revised January 6, 2024; Accepted January 22, 2024; Published March 24, 2024

Chia-Yu Hsu, Izumi Horikoshi, Rwitajit Majumdar and Hiroaki Ogata

Chia-Yu Hsu

Graduate School of Informatics, Kyoto University, Japan // hsu.chiayu.25t@st.kyoto-u.ac.jp

Izumi Horikoshi

Academic Center for Computing and Media Studies, Kyoto University, Japan // horikoshi.izumi.7f@kyoto-u.ac.jp

Rwitajit Majumdar

Academic Center for Computing and Media Studies, Kyoto University, Japan // Research and Education Institute for Semiconductors and Informatics, Kumamoto University, Japan // majumdar@kumamoto-u.ac.jp

Hiroaki Ogata

 Academic Center for Computing and Media Studies, Kyoto University, Japan // hiroaki.ogata@gmail.com


This study focuses on the problem that the process of building learning habits has not been clearly described. Therefore, we aim to extract the stages of learning habits from log data. We propose a data model to extract stages of learning habits based on the transtheoretical model and apply the model to the learning logs of self-directed extensive reading to demonstrate the process of building learning habits. We uncover the various stages (i.e., the precontemplation, contemplation, preparation, action, and maintenance stage) that learners underwent, and different proportions of the maximum stage that they achieved during an 11-month, self-directed, extensive reading program—implemented in a Japanese junior high school. This study contributes to realizing a method to evaluate the learning process, by tracing the stages of learning habits in long-term, and continuous learning activities. Further, this study can help guide the development of evidence-based educational interventions to support the building of lifelong learning habits and self-directed learning, using data-driven methods.


Learning habits, Stages of behavior change, Transtheoretical model, Learning analytics, Extensive reading

Cite as:Hsu, C.-Y., Horikoshi, I., Majumdar, R., & Ogata, H. (2024). Extracting stages of learning habits from year-long self-directed extensive reading logs. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 134-146. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).RP08
Submitted July 28, 2023; Revised November 4, 2023; Accepted January 5, 2024; Published April 29, 2024

Benazir Quadir

Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University, China // benazir.quadir@xjtlu.edu.cn

Jie Chi Yang

National Central University, Taiwan // yang@cl.ncu.edu.tw


Many advanced learning tools have been recently developed; however, demand for interactive environments that can enhance learning performance in a blended setting is growing. This study designed an interactive approach by integrating a learning tool, interactive sessions, and a variety of interaction types, and the effects of the types of interactions on learning performance were evaluated. Specifically, the WeChat-based app Rain Classroom was used to enhance learning. Rain Classroom has learner–learner, learner–teacher, and learner–content interaction sessions before, during, and after class; the method was denoted the Rain Classroom interactive approach. Analysis of covariance results revealed that the experimental group using Rain Classroom significantly outperformed the control group participating in conventional learning. A Pearson correlation analysis was conducted on Rain Classroom system log data, and learner interaction features, namely self-practice tests, Danmu discussion, and the instant response system (IRS), were positively related with learning performance; however, attendance was unrelated. Multiple regression analysis was conducted to determine which Rain Classroom interaction types predict learning performance; all interaction types predicted learning performance, but learner–content interactions had the greatest effect. Teachers could refer to the proposed Rain Classroom–based interactive approach when developing methods to improve student learning performance in a digital interactive environment.


Interactivity, learning performance, Blended learning, Rain Classroom, WeChat App

Cite as:Quadir, B., & Yang, J. C. (2024). Interactive learning with WeChat’s Rain Classroom in a blended setting: The influence of three types of interactions on learning performance. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 147-164. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).RP09
Submitted November 9, 2022; Revised November 6, 2023; Accepted January 12, 2024; Published April 29, 2024

Shu-Ling Wang 

Graduate Institute of Digital Learning and Education, National Taiwan University of Science and Technology, Taipei, Taiwan // shuling@mail.ntust.edu.tw  

John J. H. Lin

Graduate Institute of Science Education, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei, Taiwan // john.jrhunglin@ntnu.edu.tw

Pin-Chun Su

Graduate Institute of Digital Learning and Education, National Taiwan University of Science and Technology, Taipei, Taiwan // chunchunpin@gmail.com


Although research suggests a relationship among personal characteristics, behaviors, and performance, there has been limited examination of these influences in the context of intelligence tests using eye movement techniques. Thus, this study explored the roles of personal characteristics (i.e., visual/verbal cognitive styles, self-efficacy) and reading behaviors in the reasoning performance of Raven’s Advanced Progressive Matrices test based on social cognitive perspectives using eye movement techniques, in order to provide more authentic information about individuals’ actual behaviors. A total of 53 undergraduate and graduate students participated. Thirty participants were classified as visual style and the others were classified as verbal style learners. Regarding the role of cognitive styles in reading behaviors and reasoning performance, the results indicated a marginal difference in dispersion reading behavior between participants with visual and verbal cognitive style, and a significant relationship between visual style and dispersion reading behavior. However, no difference was found in performance between these two styles. As for the role of self-efficacy, the results showed that it was positively related to horizontal reading and APM-short performance. Mediation analyses revealed that self-efficacy not only directly impacted reasoning performance, but also had an indirect effect on performance through horizontal and tilted reading. On the other hand, cognitive style had no direct or indirect effect on reasoning performance. Moreover, the results showed that horizontal, vertical and tilted reading significantly predicted reasoning performance. The findings suggest that educators could enhance learners’ self-efficacy through goal setting, feedback, and strategy instruction, which would help facilitate their learning behaviors and performance.


Cognitive style, Self-efficacy, Raven’s Advanced Progressive Matrices Test, Eye movement, Reading behaviors

Cite as:Wang, S.-L., Lin, J. J. H., & Su, P.-C. (2024). The roles of self-efficacy and cognitive styles on reading behaviors and reasoning performance: An eye movement perspective. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 165-184. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).RP10
Submitted July 26, 2023; Revised January 21, 2024; Accepted January 25, 2024; Published April 29, 2024

Daner Sun

The Education University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China // dsun@eduhk.hk 

Kee Lee Chou

The Education University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China // klchou@eduhk.hk 

Lan Yang

The Education University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China // yanglan@eduhk.hk 

Yuqin Yang

Central China Normal University, China // yangyuqin@ccnu.edu.cn


This systematic review aims to offer a comprehensive analysis of recent empirical studies on technology-supported scaffoldings (TSS) within the education sector. A total of 31 TSS studies published between 2017 and 2022 were selected from the reputable databases. The analysis focuses on trends, research methods, intervention design, and student learning outcomes in TSS studies. The findings reveal that TSS applications encompass a diverse range of participants, subjects, pedagogical approaches, teaching strategies, and technological tools, impacting cognitive and affective domains. However, recent TSS research demonstrates a bias towards upper primary and junior secondary students, with a focus on science and language subjects. While established e-learning tools are commonly integrated into TSS designs, there is limited exploration of metacognitive and motivational scaffoldings. This study highlights the importance of dynamic scheduling and adjustment of TSS to cater to individual student needs and capabilities, laying the groundwork for future research to develop highly customized TSS that effectively support student learning.


Technology-supported scaffoldings (TSS), Systematic review, Primary and secondary education

Cite as:Sun, D., Chou, K. L., Yang, L., & Yang, Y. (2024). A systematic review of technology-supported scaffoldings in empirical studies from 2017-2022: Trends, scaffolding design features and learning outcomes. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 185-203. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).RP11
Submitted July 5, 2023; Revised January 2, 2024; Accepted January 27, 2024; Published May 23, 2024

Mark Winston Visonà

Hofstra University, USA // Mark.W.Visona@hofstra.edu

Şebnem Kurt

Iowa State University, USA // skurt@iastate.edu 


Existing studies investigating the integration of technology using the framework of technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPACK) have frequently relied on self-reported data analyzed through qualitative or quantitative methods focusing on TPACK regardless of their contexts. Targeting this need to better understand how teachers’ individual factors influence their TPACK development, the current study uses reflective writing assignments from 45 international English teachers participating in a global online course (GOC) on educational technology in the classroom to identify how details related to classroom, school, and/or national context influence TPACK gained from an activity involving Google Docs. Further drawing on a systemic functional approach using the APPRAISAL system to examine how teachers use evaluative language to successfully demonstrate TPACK through reflective writing, our qualitative discourse analysis reveals that participants often used positive and negative evaluation of their own and student behavior (JUDGEMENT) and, more rarely, emotions (AFFECT) to describe changes in TPACK shaped by new understandings of specific uses of technology in classroom contexts. Findings also show that participants often mentioned details related to their classroom actions and practices yet rarely provided contextual details related to school, community, or national/societal factors in these assignments. By utilizing qualitative analysis of reflective writing to capture how in-service teachers develop TPACK shaped by their individual contexts, this study provides avenues for understanding TPACK through professional development materials rather than teachers’ self-reports while suggesting methods useful for both global online course design and future studies operationalizing context as part of the TPACK framework.


Technological pedagogical content knowledge, Appraisal, Teacher education, Reflective writing, Global online courses 

Cite as:Visonà, M. W., & Kurt, Ş. (2024). Qualitatively analyzing the influence of context on international English teachers’ TPACK in reflective writing assignments from a global online course. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 204-217. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).RP12
Submitted July 8, 2023; Revised December 20, 2023; Accepted February 8, 2024; Published May 23, 2024

Special Issue Articles

Chun Lai

Faculty of Education, The University of Hong Kong // laichun@hku.hk 

Olga Viberg

School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, KTH Royal Institute of Technology // oviberg@kth.se

Chunping Zheng

School of Humanities, Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications // zhengchunping@bupt.edu.cn


The development and prevalence of technology has not only facilitated favorable conditions for self-directed learning but also made it a core competence of today’s world. Thus, cultivating K-12 learners’ capability of utilizing technology to engage in self-directed learning becomes an essential task in education. In this editorial of the special issue, we join the authors to search for insights into what to and how to support K-12 learners’ capacity of self-directed learning with technology. Through reviewing the framework of self-directed learning and exploring the role of technology, we call for research that examine mechanisms and issues that related not only to fostering learners’ regulation of their learning process, but also to supporting learners in initiating and taking responsibilities for self-directed actions to the benefit of oneself and one’s community.


Self-directed learning; Self-regulation; K-12 education 

Cite as:Lai, C., Viberg, O., & Zheng, Z. (2024). Guest editorial: Preparing for the future: Cultivating self-directed learners with technology in the K-12 context. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 218-222. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).SP01

Xiaohong Liu

School of Education Science, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing, China // xiaohongliu1211@gmail.com 

Jon-Chao Hong 

School of Education Science, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing, China // tcdahong@gmail.com

Li Zhao

School of Education Science, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing, China // li.zhao@njnu.edu.cn


Self-directed learning (SDL) is a basic individual ability in modern society. It is of great value to explore SDL and its relationship to learners’ online learning effectiveness. This study explored the relationships among online learners’ personality traits (neuroticism and extraversion), SDL (SDL-approach and SDL-attitude), and perceived online learning ineffectiveness (POLI). A total of 668 high school students who had received online learning completed the survey. Results revealed that neuroticism negatively predicted SDL-approach and SDL-attitude, whereas extraversion was positively correlated with SDL-approach and SDL-attitude, and SDL-approach and SDL-attitude were negatively correlated with POLI. In addition, the correlation between personality traits and POLI was significantly mediated by the two types of SDL. The findings provide educators with empirical evidence and insights about improving students’ SDL and understanding the importance of personality traits in online learning.


High school students, Neuroticism, Extraversion, Self-directed learning, Online learning effectiveness

Cite as:Liu, X., Hong, J.-C., & Zhao, L. (2024). Personality traits related to self-directed learning towards perceived online learning ineffectiveness. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 223-235. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).SP02
Published May 27, 2023

Min Zhang

School of Information Science and Technology, Northeast Normal University, China // zhangm122@nenu.edu.cn

Qiang Jiang 

School of Information Science and Technology, Northeast Normal University, China // jiangqiang@nenu.edu.cn

Weiyan Xiong

Department of International Education, Education University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong // wxiong@eduhk.hk 

Qi Li

School of Information Science and Technology, Northeast Normal University, China // liq410@nenu.edu.cn

Wei Zhao

School of Information Science and Technology, Northeast Normal University, China // zhaow577@nenu.edu.cn


Self-directed learning with mobile technology (SDLMT) is critical to students’ learning success. However, only minimal research has been conducted on the manner by which significant aspects (e.g., self-efficacy, student engagement) are related to SDLMT. This study analyzed the answers of 485 Chinese students (seventh to ninth grades) who were surveyed, and evaluated the relationships among self-efficacy (Internet self-efficacy and online communication self-efficacy), student engagement (behavioral, cognitive, emotional, and social engagement), and SDLMT. Structural equation model revealed that SDLMT was positively predicted by self-efficacy, and SDLMT was positively impacted by student engagement. Moreover, the mediation analysis was performed using the PROCESS plugin in SPSS and determined that after controlling for gender and grade, the relationship between self-efficacy and SDLMT was partially mediated by student engagement. Findings established the value of self-efficacy for SDLMT, and further emphasized the vital mediating role of student engagement. Hence, developing K–12 students’ SDLMT entails enhancing self-efficacy and student engagement.


Self-efficacy, Student engagement, Self-directed learning, Mobile technology, Self-directed learning with mobile technology

Cite as:Zhang, M., Jiang, Q., Xiong, W., Li, Q., & Zhao, W. (2024). Self-efficacy predicting K–12 students’ self-directed learning with mobile technology: Analyzing the mediating role of student engagement. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 236-252. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).SP03 
Published August 4, 2023

Lianjiang Jiang

Faculty of Education, University of Hong Kong, HKSAR China // jljiang@hku.hk

Hayley Kam

Faculty of Education, University of Hong Kong, HKSAR China // kamhaynamhayley@gmail.com

Daniel Ferguson

Faculty of Education, University of Hong Kong, HKSAR China // danielf@connect.hku.hk


The importance of self-directed language learning is well documented. Yet whether and how teachers in K-12 contexts can facilitate self-directed language learning, particularly during the pandemic, remains underexplored. Informed by a sociocultural conceptualization of self-directed language learning as socially mediated action, this study presents a tale of two primary English teachers’ use of digital multimodal composing (DMC) to facilitate self-directed language learning among their young learners. Multiple sources of data were gathered, including in-depth interviews, observation, reflection, and multimodal videos. The analysis shows that using DMC in K-12 language pedagogies affords a new avenue for the two teachers to engage their students with self-directed language learning. The findings reveal that with DMC, the teachers facilitated their young learners with both artifactual literacies and participatory contributions to an online English community. With the artifactual and participatory patterns of literacy learning during DMC, the study argues that self-directed language learning for contemporary young learners is becoming multimodal, digital, embodied, artifactual, connected, collaborative, and distributed within and across multiple spaces. The study refutes a deficit perspective toward K-12 learners and advocates recognizing and building on their linguistic and cultural repertories for the emergent process of self-directed language learning with technologies. Implications on how K-12 teachers should go beyond technological know-how to pedagogical know-how are also discussed. 


Self-directed language learning, Digital multimodal composing, Primary English teachers, Artifactual, Participatory

Jiang, L., Kan, H., & Ferguson, D. (2024). Facilitating self-directed language learning during the pandemic through digital multimodal composing: A tale of two Hong Kong primary English teachers. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 253-267. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).SP04
Published August 4, 2023

Carmen Durham

University of Northern Iowa, USA // carmen.durham@uni.edu

Loren Jones

University of Maryland, USA // ldjones@umd.edu


Technology continually changes day-to-day interactions, and emergent bilingual learners often multitask, using several digital tools, at times simultaneously, to communicate and learn. Students may text, post on social media, and listen to music as they complete their work. Studies have examined the affordances of technology for language learning, both inside and outside of traditional classroom settings. However, as we seek to better understand how teachers can incorporate students’ experiences and interests in academic settings, more research is needed on the nuanced ways that students leverage multiple digital tools as they multitask, or quickly alternate between technologies. This ethnographic study focuses on two high school classes of English to speakers of other languages in the United States. Through the lens of sociocultural theory, we examine how emergent bilingual students multitask with digital tools and how teachers facilitate technology use. Findings reveal that although teachers actively and explicitly approved specific assignments and digital tools that would lead to accomplishing daily language and content objectives, students also purposefully selected other digital tools that would help them co-construct knowledge with peers, and they often switched between various websites across multiple devices to examine content that was closely related to their interests and lived experiences. Evidence from previous studies supports that multitasking can be harmful to learning, but this study found that multitasking can also mediate learning, especially self-directed learning, which has important implications for how teachers implement digital tools in the classroom.


Multitasking, Sociocultural theory, Self-directed learning, English to speakers of other languages, Emergent bilingual learners

Cite as:Durham, C., & Jones, L. (2024). “Mirá, mirá [Look at this]”: High school emergent bilingual learners multitasking and collaborating with digital tools. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 268-282. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).SP05
Published August 10, 2023

Yin Yang

Artificial Intelligence and Digital Competency Education Centre, The Education University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong //  yangyinnicole@gmail.com

Yuyang Cai

School of Languages, Shanghai University of International Business and Economics, China // sailor_cai@hotmail.com

Yanjie Song

Department of Mathematics and Information Technology, The Education University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong // ysong@eduhk.hk


The effect of technology on primary students’ self-regulated vocabulary learning (SRVL) over time and its dynamic relationship with vocabulary outcomes have been scarcely studied. This quasi-experimental study reports a longitudinal inquiry into the effect of a mobile-assisted self-regulation scheme on primary students’ SRVL and the relationship between the changes in the perceived SRVL skills and vocabulary learning outcome. The study lasted seven months. Participants were 174 Grade 4 students (89 girls) from four classes at a primary school in Mainland China. Two classes were randomly assigned to the experimental and control groups. Students in both groups used the app named Vocab+, the former with and the latter without a mobile-assisted self-regulation scheme. Data collection included questionnaires on students’ perceived SRVL skills and vocabulary tests. Latent Growth Modelling (LGM) was used to analyse data. The results showed that perceived SRVL skills and vocabulary learning outcomes increased over time. The findings further revealed that students in the experimental group exhibited a steeper increasing trend in perceived SRVL skills and vocabulary learning outcomes. Besides, the association between the growth rates of students’ perception of SRVL skills and vocabulary learning outcomes was stronger with the experimental group than with the control group. Our results provided theoretical implications for understanding the relationship between SRVL skills and vocabulary learning outcomes from a developmental perspective.  


Self-regulated learning (SRL), Mobile-assisted self-regulation scheme, Self-regulated vocabulary learning (SRVL), Latent growth modelling

Cite as:Yang, Y., Cai, Y., & Song, Y. (2024). Examining the effect of a mobile-assisted self-regulation scheme on primary students’ self-regulated vocabulary learning via latent growth modelling. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 283-302. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).SP06
Published August 10, 2023

Michael Yi-Chao Jiang

School of Foreign Languages & Center for Technology Enhanced Language Learning, Shenzhen Technology University, Shenzhen, China // mjiang@sztu.edu.cn

Morris Siu-Yung Jong

Department of Curriculum and Instruction & Centre for Learning Sciences and Technologies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China // mjong@cuhk.edu.hk 

Ching-Sing Chai

Department of Curriculum and Instruction & Centre for Learning Sciences and Technologies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China // cschai@cuhk.edu.hk


Self-directed learning (SDL) is acknowledged as an effective language learning paradigm because learning a language is time-consuming. As language and literacy education is now embracing a more multimodal approach in writing instruction, teachers’ multimodal technological, pedagogical, and content knowledge (TPACK) receives growing attention in language education. Based on a VR-supported L1 Chinese writing program, the present study collected and analyzed the VR courseware, lesson plans and student worksheets developed by a group of Chinese language teachers in Hong Kong. A coding scheme regarding multimodal TPACK for SDL was employed to assess the learning activities and to understand teachers’ multimodal TPACK literacies in L1 Chinese writing instruction. The findings revealed that teachers were able to use VR to immerse students in an authentic environment to develop students’ SDL ability and comprehension of nuanced socioemotional aspects of L1 Chinese writing. Nonetheless, there existed some limitations in the utilization of VR for teaching L1 Chinese writing which might be compensated for by pedagogical design. Moreover, teachers’ pedagogical conception revealed their teaching was driven by syllabus requirements and focused on students’ completion of writing, which might disregard the process of SDL in pedagogical implementation, and thus the process of collaborative knowledge building might be less developed. This study may contribute to the development of VR-based multimodal TPACK, which enhances multimodal lesson design for self-directed L1 writing.


Virtual reality, Multimodal TPACK, Self-directed learning, L1 writing, Chinese education 

Cite as:Jiang, M. Y.-C., Jong, M. S.-Y., & Chai, C.-S. (2024). Understanding teachers’ multimodal TPACK literacies for supporting VR-based self-directed learning of L1 writing. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 303-317. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).SP07
Published May 23, 2024

Chen Feng, Haesol Bae, Krista Glazewski, Cindy E. Hmelo-Silver, Thomas A. Brush, Bradford W. Mott, Seung Y. Lee and James C. Lester

Chen Feng

Indiana University, United States // carrfeng@iu.edu

Haesol Bae

The State University of New York, United States // hbae4@albany.edu

Krista Glazewski

North Carolina State University, United States // kdglazew@ncsu.edu

Cindy E. Hmelo-Silver

Indiana University, United States // chmelosi@indiana.edu

Thomas A. Brush

Indiana University, United States // tbrush@indiana.edu 

Bradford W. Mott

North Carolina State University, United States // bwmott@ncsu.edu

Seung Y. Lee

North Carolina State University, United States // sylee@ncsu.edu

James C. Lester

North Carolina State University, United States // lester@ncsu.edu


Successful problem-based learning (PBL) often requires students to collectively regulate their learning processes as a group and engage in socially shared regulation of learning (SSRL). This paper focuses on how facilitators supported SSRL in the context of middle-school game-based PBL. Using conversation analysis, this study analyzed text-based chat messages of facilitators and students collected during gameplay. The analysis revealed direct modeling strategies such as performing regulative processes, promoting group awareness, and dealing with contingency as well as indirect strategies including prompting questions and acknowledgment of regulation, and the patterns of how facilitation faded to yield responsibilities to students to regulate their own learning. The findings will inform researchers and practitioners to design prompts and develop technological tools such as adaptive scaffolding to support SSRL in PBL or other collaborative inquiry processes.


Problem-based learning, Socially shared regulation, Facilitation, Collaborative inquiry, Conversation analysis

Cite as:Feng, C., Bae, H., Glazewski, K., Hmelo-Silver, C. E., Brush, T. A., Mott, B. W., Lee, S. Y., & Lester J. C. (2024). Exploring facilitation strategies to support socially shared regulation in a problem-based learning game. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 318-334. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).SP08
Published June 1, 2024

Theme-Based Articles

Generative artificial intelligence in education: Theories, technologies, and applications

Hui-Chin Yeh

Department of Applied Foreign Languages, National Yunlin University of Science and Technology, Yunlin, Taiwan // hyeh@yuntech.edu.tw


This paper presents the integration of generative artificial intelligence (GAI) and other AI tools in English as a Foreign Language (EFL) education, addressing the limitations of traditional pedagogical approaches. Conventional EFL methods, often reliant on rote learning for standardized tests, struggle to impart practical language skills relevant to real-world scenarios. By leveraging AI technologies, this study proposes innovative solutions to these challenges, creating authentic, context-rich learning environments and facilitating creative integration of technology for language acquisition. The synergy between GAI and other technology tools enables the creation of immersive language scenarios, offering tailored exercises and narratives that cater to individual proficiency levels and learning objectives. This collaborative approach empowers both teachers and learners to generate their own content, thereby enhancing comprehension and confidence across diverse linguistic contexts. By transcending traditional teaching methods, the integration of GAI with other tools emerges as a transformative catalyst in language education, providing learners with authentic language practice opportunities and empowering them to engage with English in innovative and personalized ways. The paper concludes by urging EFL educators to embrace AI not merely as supplementary resources but as integral components in redefining pedagogical strategies, ensuring the development of more engaging, tailored, and effective language learning environments.


English language education, generative artificial intelligence (GAI), ChatGPT, Contextual learning, Immersive experiences

Cite as:Yeh, H.-C. (2024). Revolutionizing language learning: Integrating generative AI for enhanced language proficiency. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 335-353. https://doi.org/ 10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).TP01
Published June 1, 2024

Yung-Hsiang Hu

Department of Education, University of Taipei, Taiwan // hsianghu@go.edu.tw


Ethical decision-making is challenging for most students. Values clarification exercises (VCEs) can help reduce decisional conflicts and feelings of regret. Scholars have suggested designing values deliberation exercises based on moral dilemma scenarios to help students to identify their values system. However, such exercises are challenging to complete for most teachers and students. Therefore, the development of artificial intelligence (AI)-supported decision aids is warranted. Studies have revealed that using a one-on-one interactive chatbot is a feasible learning strategy for improving the dialectic skills of students. Thus, this study proposed a human–machine learning framework that helps students to perform values clarification in the context of moral dilemmas. To assess the effectiveness of the framework, the present study incorporated the chatbot Chat Generative Pre-trained Transformer into the business ethics course of a university to develop a generative-AI-chatbot-assisted VCE (GAIC-VCE) system for university students. In total, 70 university students were recruited and divided into an experimental group and a control group. The experimental group completed GAIC-VCEs, whereas the control group completed conventional VCEs. The results revealed that the GAIC-VCE system effectively improved the experimental-group students’ ethical self-efficacy and ethical decision-making confidence and reduced their decisional conflicts.


Generative AI, Chatbot, Values clarification, Decision aids, AI learning companions 

Cite as:Hu, Y.-H. (2024). Implementing generative AI chatbots as a decision aid for enhanced values clarification exercises in online business ethics education. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 356-373. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).TP02
Published June 1, 2024

Hsin Huang

School of Nursing, National Taipei University of Nursing and Health Sciences, Taipei, Taiwan // jhshing1029@gmail.com

Hui-Chen Lin

School of Nursing, College of Nursing, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan // Research Center in Nursing Clinical Practice, Wan Fang Hospital, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan // ceciliatsgh@gmail.com


Professional Identity Formation (PIF) is considered a crucial process in medical education. It involves how medical students identify their role as physicians, discover their professional positioning, and gradually develop their professional identity through social interactions. This qualitative descriptive study adopted the phenomenological method; it proposed the DSCOR (Diverse thinking, Seeking advice, Construction, Organizing and sharing, and Reflection) model based on the ChatGPT as a life coach (ChatGPT-LC) self-regulated learning (SRL) approach to design a PIF course for six medical students. Data collection included digital storytelling created using AI-generated techniques, learning sheets, direct observations, reflective feedback forms, and semi-structured interviews. The data transcription and analysis were conducted using Colaizzi’s method. The results revealed three benefits of Generative AI (i.e., ChatGPT), namely “increasing motivation for planning PIF,” “strengthening the mastery of PIF,” and “broadening the perspectives of PIF.” Moreover, the ChatGPT-LC SRL approach had a positive influence on students, helping them understand the significance of PIF in their personal development at the early stage. The artificial intelligence-generated content provided positive guidance and supportive learning, offering specific suggestions and assistance. This brought about benefits for learning, and provided initial evidence for the application of ChatGPT-LC in medical education.


Professional identity formation, Artificial intelligence-generated content, Medical students, Self-regulated learning

Cite as:Huang, H., & Lin, H.-C. (2024). ChatGPT as a life coach for professional identity formation in medical education: A self-regulated learning perspective. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 374-389. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).TP03
Published June 1, 2024

Deliang Wang

Faculty of Education, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China // wdeliang@connect.hku.hk

Yaqian Zheng

School of Educational Technology, Beijing Normal University, China / zhengyq@mail.bnu.edu.cn

Gaowei Chen

Faculty of Education, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China // gwchen@hku.hk


This study investigates the potential of ChatGPT, a cutting-edge large language model in generative artificial intelligence (AI), to support the teaching of dialogic pedagogy to preservice teachers. A workshop was conducted with 29 preservice teachers, wherein ChatGPT and another prominent AI model, Bert, were sequentially integrated to facilitate real-time analysis and enhance the participants’ learning experience. Data regarding preservice teachers’ trust in and technology acceptance of ChatGPT and Bert, as well as their perceptions of ChatGPT’s efficacy in facilitating their learning, were collected and analyzed. The findings indicate that the preservice teachers exhibited greater trust and technology acceptance regarding ChatGPT compared to the baseline model, Bert, for supporting their learning. However, the participants’ satisfaction questionnaire responses indicated only moderate satisfaction with ChatGPT’s facilitation of their learning of dialogic pedagogy. Thematic analyses of interviews further revealed the perceived strengths and weaknesses of ChatGPT, as reported by preservice teachers. They expressed satisfaction with ChatGPT’s comprehensiveness, interpretability, and critical analysis, which contributed positively to their learning experiences. Nevertheless, they also identified issues related to lengthiness, readability, and answer accuracy. This exploratory study highlights the potential of ChatGPT to help teach dialogic pedagogy, paving the way for future research to integrate generative AI into teacher learning programs.


Artificial intelligence, ChatGPT, Dialogic pedagogy, Preservice teachers, Trust

Cite as:Wang, D., Zheng, Y., & Chen, G. (2024). ChatGPT or Bert? Exploring the potential of ChatGPT to facilitate preservice teachers’ learning of dialogic pedagogy. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 390-406. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).TP04
Published June 1, 2024

Mei-Rong Alice Chen

Department of English Language and Literature, Soochow University, Taiwan // Empower Vocational Education Research Center, National Taiwan University of Science and Technology, Taiwan // mralice@scu.edu.tw 


The increase in popularity of Generative Artificial Intelligence Chatbots, or GACs, has created a potentially fruitful opportunity to enhance teaching English as a Foreign Language (EFL). This study investigated the possibility of using GACs to give EFL students metalinguistic guidance (MG) in linguistics courses. Language competency gaps, a lack of individualized engagement, and low metacognitive abilities are common challenges EFL students face in linguistics courses. Feedback has been suggested as a potential solution to these issues in previous studies; nevertheless, conventional corrective feedback (CF) might not fully satisfy the demands of EFL students. In order to address these obstacles, the current study suggested a metalinguistic guiding (MG)-based GAC approach. Using a quasi-experimental approach with pretest and posttest setups, this study evaluated the learning achievement, reflective performance, perception, and metacognitive awareness of EFL students exposed to either CF-based GAC or MG-based GAC. According to the study’s findings, the MG-based GAC group performed better than the CF-based GAC group in terms of learning achievement, reflective performance, and perceptual and metacognitive awareness. The GAC’s immediate educational usefulness and potential as a pedagogical tool for shaping cognitive processes are highlighted by its successful application in helping EFL students gain metacognitive awareness. This study contributes significantly to the growing body of knowledge about the use of GAC in educational settings by providing empirical evidence of the effectiveness of GAC in terms of delivering MG to EFL students.


Generative AI chatbot, Metalinguistic guidance, Metacognition, Reflection, English as a Foreign Language

Cite as:Chen, M.-R. A. (2024). Metacognitive mastery: Transformative learning in EFL through a generative AI chatbot fueled by metalinguistic guidance. Educational Technology & Society, 27(3), 407-427. https://doi.org/10.30191/ETS.202407_27(3).TP05
Published June 1, 2024

Starting from Volume 17 Issue 4, all published articles of the journal of Educational Technology & Society are available under Creative Commons CC-BY-ND-NC 3.0 license.