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Understanding the impact of technology in education on student progression and learning outcomes


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Countries Where The Impact Occurred

Ireland


Researchers Involved:

Dr. Ann Marcus Quinn

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Summary of the Impact:

Integrating technology into classrooms is a significant challenge facing education. The rapid move to online teaching perpetuated by the global pandemic brings into sharp focus the inequity of digital access, the impact of technology on students’ ability to learn and the lack of policy, guidance and quality pertaining to digital pedagogy. The digital divide continues to disadvantage students and the potential impact on their progression is grave.

Research undertaken by Dr Ann Marcus Quinn at UL has identified factors impacting student progression as well as highlighting the need for a national, evidence-based, blended learning policy. The impact of this research has been to inform technology adoption policy in Irish education.

Teaching in a national context is important to our educational experience and cultural heritage. It is vital that there are quality resources tailored to the needs of a country’s learners. Part of this research explored digital resources for post-primary students and the resources’ localisation. It found gaps in resourcing for important subjects. In particular, humanities lacked available localised content.

Ten years ago, the lack of curriculum-relevant digital resources was a common concern of postprimary teachers who were considering using digital technology in the classroom. There is a greater lack in less-populated countries where the market size for bespoke curricular-relevant materials does not support a commercial market for teaching materials.

Since 2004, Dr Marcus-Quinn, School of English, Irish and Communication, UL and Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) Research Affiliate has collaborated with teaching professionals and researchers to focus on the design and development of digital learning resources at third-level (Ref 7) and post-primary (Ref 8). The research led to the development of best-practice pedagogical principles and open-source educational resources. It ensured accessibility, content quality, and supported learning outcomes.

For example, working with Barbara Geraghty UL’s School of Modern Languages and Applied Linguistics, Dr Marcus-Quinn created resources for all undergraduate students of Japanese. Implementation of these principles and resources in the classroom led to improvements in acquiring Japanese syllabary (Hiragana); students grasped Hiragana twice as quickly as those using paperbased materials (Ref 9). The co-collaborators also considered accessibility guidelines at every stage of design and development, creating a resource accessible to all learners. As a result, in 2007, the Hiragana resource was awarded the European Commissions’ European Language Label. Its template has been used since to create additional resources. 

 


Beneficiaries

Second-level schools, including stakeholders: students, teachers, administration, parents and carers; policy-makers of second-level education


Sustainable Development Goals

  • 04 Quality Education

References to the research

How Should Second-Level Schools Respond in An Era of Digital Learning?

https://educationmatters.ie/downloads/EMYB-20192020.pdf

Authors: Marcus-Quinn, A., Hourigan, T and McCoy, S.


The materiality of support materials (informal books) in the classroom

https://en.unipress.dk/udgivelser/t/the-materiality-of-reading/

Authors: Marcus-Quinn, A and Hourigan, T.


The Digital Learning Movement: How Should Irish Schools Respond?

https://www.esr.ie/article/view/1332

Authors: Marcus-Quinn, A., Hourigan, T and McCoy, S.


Open Education and Post-Primary Education

Authors: Marcus-Quinn, A and Hourigan, T.


Exploring the Possibilities afforded by Open Education at Second Level in Ireland

Authors: Marcus-Quinn, A and Hourigan, T.


The potential of high quality Open Educational Resources (OERs) for the teaching of English poetry

https://doi.org/10.1080/08893675.2016.1133085

Authors: Marcus-Quinn, A.


Design and development of a digital learning resource to deliver online content to teach Japanese syllabaries

https://www.igi-global.com/book/critical-design-effective-tools-learning/40285

Authors: Marcus-Quinn, A; Geraghty, B


Digital divide in post-primary schools

http://hdl.handle.net/10344/4338

Authors: Marcus-Quinn, A., McGarr, O.


An evaluation of independent learning of the Japanese hiragana system using an interactive CD

https://doi.org/10.1017/S0958344009000226

Authors: Geraghty, B & Marcus-Quinn, A.


Handbook for ICT in K12 Schools

https://link.springer.com/book/10.1007/978-3-319-33808-8

Authors: Marcus-Quinn, A., and Hourigan T.