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Equity in Teaching and Learning with Digital Technologies

Special issue call for papers from International Journal of Information and Learning Technology

The International Journal of Information and Learning Technology invites submissions for a special issue focusing on theory and research that explores issues around equity and digital technologies. Although much has been made of the potential for digital technologies to support more equitable and democratic teaching and learning (e.g., Ito et al., 2013; Gee, 2007), Hall (2011) suggests a need for scholarship in instructional technology and digital education to "analyse learning technology as historically situated, and thereby... use critique to reveal and produce practical alternatives to sociocultural problems" (p.273). Such critical scholarship pushes back on platitudes and widely-accepted myths about educational technology to address the complexities of reducing educational inequities (Buckingham, 2007; Reich & Ito, 2017; Selwyn, 2016). Recent work -- including critical examinations of technologically-rich makerspaces (Calabrese Barton, Tan & Greenberg, 2017; Vossoughi, Hooper, & Escude, 2016; Buechley, 2013), conversations around who benefits from educational technology (Watters, 2017), articulations of critical digital pedagogy (Stommel, 2014), and accounts of gender and race disparities in the field of instructional technology (Davis, 2015)-- attempts to explore, better account for, and counter inequities in digital teaching and learning.

In this special issue, we are interested in exploring how equity is taken up in discourse and practice across K-16 and informal learning settings featuring digital technologies and pedagogies. This might include empirical research related to learning processes, contexts, and outcomes; frameworks for understanding ways of creating more equitable instructional design with digital technologies; pedagogical approaches for using new media as sites of learning. We encourage the submission of manuscript types including literature reviews; reports of original research (quantitative, qualitative, mixed methods); and theoretical perspectives.

We invite authors to submit papers on topics including, but not exclusive to, the following topics:

- accessible technologies and digital learning environments
- digital divides and participation gaps
- corporate influence on educational technology
- representational disparities, including gender, racial, and ability disparities
- disparities in learning outcomes
- ways of moving forward toward more equitable educational technology practice
- knowledge distribution
- critical instructional design
- sustainable development goals (SDGs)
- digital citizenship, civic engagement, and action
- critical media/digital literacies
- culturally-relevant digital pedagogies
- connected learning

Manuscripts should be submitted to the IJILT ScholarOne system ( by June 1, 2018. Manuscripts must be between 3000-6000 words in length. Additional information regarding the peer review process and formatting guidelines may be found here:
When submitting your manuscript in ScholarOne, please ensure you select the correct special issue title on page 4 of the submission process.

If you have questions about the suitability of your topic or about submitting to this special issue of IJILT, please contact one of the Co-Guest Editors:

Dr. Sarah Lohnes Watulak
Associate Editor, IJILT
Associate Professor, Instructional Technology
Towson University, MD, USA

Dr. Matthew Farber
Assitant Professor
University of Northern Colorado, CO, USA

Dr. Nathan Phillips
Assistant Professor
University of Illinois at Chicago

Dr. Rebecca Woodard
Assistant Professor
University of Illinois at Chicago


Buckingham, D. (2007). Media education goes digital: An introduction. Learning, Media, and Technology, 32 (2), 111-119. doi: 10.1080/17439880701343006

Buechley, L. (2013). Thinking about making. Keynote speech presented at FabLearn Conference, Stanford, CA.

Calabrese Barton, A., Tan, E., & Greenberg, D. (2017). The makerspace movement: Sites of possibilities for equitable opportunities to engage underrepresented youth in STEM. Teachers College Record, 119, 1-44

Davis, R. (2015). The missing voices in EdTech: Bringing diversity into EdTech. Thousand Oakes, CA: Corwin.

Gee, J. (2007). Good video games + good learning: collected essays on video games, learning and literacy. New York, NY: Peter Lang

Hall, R. (2011). Revealing the transformatory moment of learning technology: The place of critical social theory. Research in Learning Technology, 19(3), 273-284. doi: 10.1080/21567069.2011.624996

Ito, M., Gutierrez, K., Livingstone, S., Penuel, B., Rhodes, J., Salen, K., Schor, J., Sefton-Green, J., & Watkins, S.C. (2013). Connected learning: An agenda for research and design. Irvine, CA: Digital Media and Leanring Research Hub.

Reich, J., & Ito, M. (2017). From good intentions to real outcomes: Equity by design in learning technologies. Irvine, CA: Digital Media and Learning Research Hub.

Selwyn, N. (2016). Education and technology: Key issues and debates. London, UK: Bloomsbury Academic.

Stommel, J. (2014). Critical digital pedagogy: A definition. Hybrid Pedagogy. Retrieved from

Vossoughi, S., Hooper, P., & Escude, M. (2016). Making through the lens of culture and power: Toward transformative visions for educational equity. Harvard Educational Review, 86(2), 206-232.

Watters, A. (2017). Inequality, 'brand ambassadors,' and the business of selling (to) classrooms [blog post]. Retrieved from