8Learning Technology in Higher Education

Johannes Cronje

8.1 Introduction

There are a number of models that are used to describe the implementation and use of technology in higher education. These models range from process models (Marshall 2008) through best practice models (Krause, McEwen, and Blinco 2009) to student satisfaction models (Sun et al. 2008). Attempts have also been made at integrating these models into a holistic, multi-dimensional approach. This chapter will use Johan Badenhorst’s SILSTI (student, instructor, learning design, support, technology and institutional) dimensions as an organizing framework (Badenhorst 2013).

The dynamic interaction between technology and society is as present in academia as it is in the rest of the world. While technology enables various new and exciting possibilities, it also presents us with a constant array of new challenges. In an increasingly connected world students are more mobile, resulting in a more diverse student population than ever before. This diversity includes a wide range of digital literacy or the lack of it. Students are not the only ones whose needs have changed. The same goes for instructors, some who see technology as a threat, and others who see it as an opportunity, leading to problems for institutions in dealing with both laggards and maverick early adopters. While there are increasing needs for technological support, technology can also be a valuable conduit for providing support. Then there is the technology itself ...

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