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Engage in Conversation: How Does Social Justice Intersect Educational Technology?

Author: Samantha Goldman;

How does research on social justice intersect educational technology? An earlier CIDDL Research and Practice Brief may give us some insights into this topic. In this brief, we interviewed Dr. David M. Marcovitz, a professor of Educational Technology and Associate Dean of the School of Education at Loyola University Maryland, who researches how educational technology and social justice overlap.

According to Dr. Marcovitz, social justice and educational technology are two loosely defined concepts. To support future research in the field, Dr. Marcovitz discusses the Educational Technology Social Justice Matrix he created as a tool to organize research articles that connect the areas of educational technology and social justice. He points out that several themes have emerged from the research base. Examples of emerging research include using maker spaces to explore different cultures by creating digital clothing or using them to make Public Service Announcements. However, research investigating the connectedness among Universal Design for Learning (UDL), technology, and social justice is lacking from the literature Dr. Marcovitz has reviewed. Integrating the UDL framework and technology through the lens of social justice in teacher preparation programs has the potential to improve the capacity of pre-service teachers to implement more student-centered and inclusive instructional practices.

In addition, Dr. Marcovitz states that social justice and equity are always mentioned in the educational technology standards; however, there were few practical methods with regards to how to integrate them in the real world. As examples, he lists projects that higher education faculty can integrate into their classrooms as ways to connect cultures, such as telecollaboration and creating sound recordings to make a sound statement. Finally, Dr. Marcovitz discusses the implications the Matrix has on improving accessibility and inclusivity in technology use as well as how it can support future research and practices in teacher preparation and related services personnel programs.

Check out this page to review this Brief or click here to download a PDF copy of the Brief. More CIDDL Research and Practice Briefs can be found on this CIDDL webpage. Please visit our website for more resources and sign up for updates from CIDDL.