Online Learning and Community Cohesion: Linking Schools, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Online Learning and Community Cohesion

Linking Schools, 1st Edition

By Roger Austin, Bill Hunter


180 pages

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New in Paperback: 9781138376861
pub: 2018-08-09
Hardback: 9780415510288
pub: 2013-07-08
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pub: 2013-07-04
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National governments and multi-national institutions are spending unprecedented amounts of money on ICT on improving the overall quality of school learning, and schools are increasingly expected to prepare young people for a global economy in which inter-cultural understanding will be a priority. This book explores and analyzes the ways ICT has been used to promote citizenship and community cohesion in projects that link together schools in different parts of the world. It examines the theoretical framework behind such work and shows the impact of initiatives in the Middle East, Canada, the USA, England, Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and elsewhere in the European Union.

This is a critical examination of the technologies that have been deployed, the professional development that has been provided and an evaluation of what constitutes good practice, particularly in terms of what collaborative learning really means for young people. Many of these initiatives have enabled young people to develop more positive relations with culturally and religiously different neighbours, but this work has just begun. Continuing international tensions over matters of identity and faith require that we better understand the political context for such work so that we might shape future directions more deliberately and more clearly.


"This book importantly contributes data about the actual state of things, particularly in the area of new technologies that are often the subject of very impassioned and idealistic claims. Research initiatives in this area have been critiqued for not asking more "state-of-the-actual" questions (Selwyn, 2010). By reviewing educational efforts in various countries, Austin and Hunter’s book gives us deeper insight into the political and social complexity that influences how and whether ICT use in education might support efforts to increase community cohesion, and ultimately reduce damaging societal conflict." - Clare Brett, Canadian Journal of Learning and Technology, Vol 41 (2)

"Online Learning and Community Cohesion is a thoughtful and articulate synopsis of the challenges we face in public education today and for the foreseeable future. Although the challenges are significant, the authors make a strong case that there is huge potential for improvements in public education and universal access to education through a reasoned approach to online learning, ICT and an inclusive perspective." - Dermod Madden, Associate-Superintendent, Aspen View School Division, in Educational Technology & Society, 17 (2)

Table of Contents


About the Authors

Roger Austin is Professor of Education at University of Ulster.

Bill Hunter is Professor at University of Ontario Institute of Technology.

About the Series

Routledge Research in Education

This series aims to present the latest research from right across the field of education. It is not confined to any particular area or school of thought and seeks to provide coverage of a broad range of topics, theories and issues from around the world.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
EDUCATION / Computers & Technology
EDUCATION / Philosophy & Social Aspects