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Book Review

Ceobanu, C., Cucoş, C., Istrate, O., & Pânişoară, I.-O. (Eds.) – Educaţia Digitală (II ed.) [Digital Education], Iaşi, Polirom, 2022.


The second edition of the book, published in 2020, Digital Education, is coordinated by Ciprian Ceobanu and Constantin Cucoş, Professors at the Faculty of Psychology and Education Sciences of the “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iaşi, Olimpius Istrate and Ion-Ovidiu Pânişoară, an Associate Professor and a Professor at the Faculty of Psychology and Education Sciences of the University of Bucharest. The studies gathered in this book include qualitative as well as quantitative analysis to help teachers expand and deepen the understanding of information for identifying solutions to the challenges of digitalization of education. Divided into thirty-four chapters grouped into five parts, the book analyses the impact of new technologies on training pathways. The reasons for which such study is extremely necessary is reflected in the concept of Education 4.0 that “although still insufficiently articulated and defined, tries to offer solutions for the changes to which the educational system must react in order to respond to the economic challenges of the beginning of the third millennium” (Ceobanu, Cucoş, Istrate, Pânişoară, 2022, p. 17). The volume is, at the same time, a response to an urgent pressure to find solutions to the crisis situation of the COVID-19 pandemic time when the Romanian education had to be moved to the online area. The coordinators underline learning in the knowledge-society requires the collaboration of several actors “both traditional (teacher, didactician, school manager etc.) and modern (computer scientist, system engineer, web-designer etc.)” (Ceobanu et al., 2022, p. 17).

The first part – Sociocultural perspectives on the use of technology in education is structured in eight chapters. In the chapter dedicated to Educational reconfigurations in the age of digital technology, Ciprian Ceobanu analyzes transformations digital technology has led to in the socio-educational sector, in individual learning, and in educational theory and practice, in order to trace lines of educational action. Simona Adam presents changing generations in the education system: “digital immigrant” teachers born before 1980 without today’s technologies need to overcome their reluctance or fear to use new technologies, while a single learning style cannot be associated with the generation of digital natives consisting of several subcategories, less homogeneous in terms of using digital technology. Explaining digital citizenship in the context of the global society, Mariana Momanu shows education for digital citizenship “is a complex and long-term process, which takes place throughout life, involves all the hypostases of the pedagogical approach (formal, non-formal and informal) and all the stages of education” (Ceobanu et al., 2022, p. 63). Ciprian Fartuşnic focuses on Adapting to online school. Challenges, opportunities, priorities examining the conditions identified as essential for a quality online education and tools gained during the COVID-19 pandemic experience of online learning. In his opinion, the investment in educational research of this subject will help us to be better prepared for future crisis situations. In the fifth chapter, Ana-Nicoleta Grigore and Constantin Cucoş cover implications of cyberbullying in an educational context explaining that, in order to the school to react appropriately to the cyberbullying phenomenon, it is necessary to develop “a dedicated and systematic approach, taking into account the long-term negative consequences for each participant” (Ceobanu et al., 2022, p. 97). Roxana Ghiaţău analyses the issues related to the relationship between ethics of technology and education (property, confidentiality, identity, students, and ethics), ethics in universities (research and rules of online ethics), and ethics and technology in the pandemic era. Andrei-Lucian Marian explains risks of using information technology and cyber safety in the educational context. Examining solutions regarding the protection and security of personal data in digital education, Adriana-Maria Şandru and Daniel-Mihail Şandru investigate a typology of the problems occurred in education during the COVID-19 pandemic from the point of view of data protection and security.

The second part, Forms and hypostases of technology-assisted learning, consists of eight chapters. In the chapter devoted to The educational process in the perspective of digitalization Ion-Ovidiu Pânişoară writes the school can increase its role in the management of the “digital world” by consolidating for the generations it forms “the open mindsets, a passion for innovation and a deep understanding of all these mechanisms that result from the impact of technology on the life of each of us” (Ceobanu et al., 2022, p. 166). Olimpius Istrate focuses, in the chapter dedicated to improving school performance by using digital tools and resources, on the result of introducing ICT in the teaching process and the significant impact of the use of technology on school performance for different targeted segments. Studying Explanatory models of learning with the help of information and communication technologies, Ruxandra Chirca underlines the agreement of the theories presented that “the current individual is not only a passive assimilator of content, but, as a result of interacting with technology, becomes the very creator or co-author of the content and, ultimately, of the knowledge of the content” (Ceobanu et al., 2022, p.195). Cornelia Măirean focuses on the particularities of the profile of individual learning in the age of digital technologies. Laura Mihaela Pascariu and Ciprian Ceobanu deal with advantages and limits of learning through cooperation in the online environment. Versavia Curelaru presents a theoretical framework of self-regulated learning and discusses its applicability in e-learning systems. Roxana Apostolache brings up the issue of learning based on investigation with the help of the computer. In the final chapter, Dana Crăciun writes a brief review of what M-learning and U-learning benefits and challenges mean.

The third part, Technology in profiling pedagogical innovation, contains six chapters. Surveying the effects of using social networks on students, teachers, and schools, Silvia Făt argues that “the biggest challenge is, in fact, a controllable aspect, namely the correct hygiene of use, for a well-determined time and purpose” (Ceobanu et al., 2022, p. 280). Simona Velea analyses socio-professional networks and collaborative learning with the help of new technologies to highlight European school partnerships through eTwinning generate motivation for learning and improvement of school results, especially in the case of pupils with low performance, and provide opportunities for professional development for the teaching staff. Carmen Holotescu and Gabriela Grosseck emphasize that the use of open educational resources (RED) can offer a wide range of innovative pedagogical options for teachers, pupils and students and allows the realization of an inclusive education. Mirela Alexandru argues that augmented reality, virtual reality, and mixed reality technologies are with significant positive effects on the educational experiences but also involve risks. There are still multiple unknown variables of implications of immersive learning and of the metaverse for educational experiences. Emil Stan focuses on the world of video games underlining games encourage the transfer of motivational skills in school.

Entitled The Specificity of the Didactic Process in the Technological Age, the fourth part portrays the contributions that the digital education (ED) paradigm brings (Ioan Neacsu), what we can transfer to digital content from the perspective of the didactic mediation process and what we cannot (Dorina Sălăvăstru), some criteria of relevance and quality of school contents / learning aids of e-learning type (Constantin Cucoş), the use of video resources incorporated in digital textbooks but also of virtual reality or augmented reality ensuring a higher level of understanding of transdisciplinary phenomena (Iuliana Lazăr, Georgeta Pânişoară), efforts to improve the educational process through the application of instructional design (Daniel Mara), particularities for the evaluation of performances in digital educational environments (Nicoleta Laura Popa), and conceptual and methodological frameworks that may interest those who aim to develop professional training programs for teaching staff in Romania (Marian D. Ilie).

The fifth part, Using technology for educational support services, covers the complex relationship between career counselling and digital technology (Mihai Iacob), the two important roles the computer plays in the instructive-educational process of children with special needs: support in communication and support in learning (Alois Gherguţ), advantages and limits of using modern technologies in teaching STEM subjects to students with intellectual disability (Florin Emil Verza, Marilena Bratu), the use of technology in psychomotor education / reeducation to provide clinicians with early warning signs for potential problems and in the recovery of various psychomotor pathologies (Beatrice Aurelia Abălaşei, Raluca Mihaela Onose), approaches to problem-solving for digital skills formation in elderly people (Georgeta Diac).

The second edition of Digital Education offers strategies for teachers designed to assimilate “digital technologies as tools to optimize training approaches” (Ceobanu et al., 2022, p. 37). An analysis of the adoption of technology in school paints a generally positive picture. Yet, the editors state the digitalization of education must be “done with measure, we must find that balance between creating what represents opportunity and what can be a medium- and long-term risk” (Ceobanu et al., 2022, p. 19). This informative book gives insights into the efforts to improve the educational process through the application of digital technologies. It is a must-read for anyone interested in teacher training.


About the Author

Ana Cristina Costea

Faculty of Political Science of the University of Bucharest







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