E-learning theory describes the cognitive science principles of effective multimedia learning using electronic educational technology. Cognitive research and theory suggest that the selection of appropriate concurrent multimedia modalities may enhance learning, as may application of several other principles.
Teacher Use of Technology
Computing technology was not created by teachers. There has been little consultation between those who promote its use in schools and those who teach with it. Decisions to purchase technology for education are very often political decisions. Most staff using these technologies did not grow up with them. Training teachers to use computer technology did improve their confidence in its use, but there was considerable dissatisfaction with training content and style of delivery. The communication element, in particular, was highlighted as the least satisfactory part of the training, by which many teachers meant the use of a VLE and discussion forums to deliver online training (Leask 2002). Technical support for online learning, lack of access to hardware, poor monitoring of teacher progress and a lack of support by online tutors were just some of the issues raised by the asynchronous online delivery of training (Davies 2004).
Newer generation web 2.0 services provide customizable, inexpensive platforms for authoring and disseminating multimedia-rich e-learning courses, and do not need specialised information technology (IT) support.
Pedagogical theory may have application in encouraging and assessing online participation. Assessment methods for on-line participation have reviewed.