Primers

CIRCL Primers are brief summaries of key topics in the field of cyberlearning. They are used to build capacity in the field and to give people a sense of cyberlearning’s main themes. Primers are developed by small teams of volunteers and licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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Virtual Reality in Educational Settings

Virtual Reality in Educational Settings
From a learning science perspective, VR ties into long-standing themes around how dynamic representations and ...

Broadening Youth Participation in Computer Science & Engineering

Broadening Youth Participation in Computer Science & Engineering
The most successful programs that have an impact on underrepresented groups are those that have ...

Computational Thinking

Computational Thinking
Computational thinking (CT), a term that experienced a surge of popularity in the 2000s, refers ...

Speech Technologies and Learning

Speech Technologies and Learning
The classroom learning environment is filled with speech in all forms—classroom discourse has notably been ...

Data Science Education

Data Science is an interdisciplinary field that seeks to derive insights and knowledge from the ...

Persistence in Education

Persistence in Education
Perseverance has become part of the everyday language of education. The misconception that intellectual power ...

Citizen Science

Citizen Science
Citizen science is the practice of public participation and collaboration in scientific research or scientific ...

Remote Labs

Remote Labs
Labs are widely considered to be essential to learning science and engineering. Remote labs can ...

Looking Ahead: Trends that Will Shape Cyberlearning

Looking Ahead: Trends that Will Shape Cyberlearning
This primer organizes two dozen current trends that we feel are most relevant into five ...

Smart and Connected Communities for Learning

Smart and Connected Communities for Learning
Smart and connected communities for learning (SCCL) leverage networks and technology to foster lifelong, lifewide ...

Evidence-Centered Design

Evidence-Centered Design
Evidence-centered design, or ECD for short, takes the art of test design and turns it ...

Understanding Universal Design for Learning

Understanding Universal Design for Learning
UDL is a research-based framework intended to guide the design of learning technologies that are ...

The Cutting Edge of Informal Learning: Makers, Mobile, and More!

Cyberlearning spans in-school and out-of-school learning -- and these days, a lot of meaningful learning ...

Games and Virtual Worlds

Games and Virtual Worlds
Computer-based games and virtual worlds provide opportunities for players to think about choices, take action, ...

Partnering for Impact: Increasing Cyberlearning’s Influence in Education Markets

Many Cyberlearning researchers know that their work could make a significant positive impact on today’s ...

Technology Enabled Formative Assessment

Formative assessment occurs when teachers check student understanding and guide decision making to improve learning ...

Collaborative Learning

Collaborative Learning
Learning to explain, justify, critique, etc. are essential skills for today’s citizens, for scientists, and ...

Educational Data Mining and Learning Analytics

Educational Data Mining and Learning Analytics
EDM is the use of multiple analytical techniques to better understand relationships, structure, patterns, and ...

AI Applications in Education

AI techniques can enable educational technologies to better track, adapt to, and support individual learners ...

Learning Sciences

The Learning Sciences is a field of scientific research that developed in the 1980s, from ...

Collective Inquiry and Knowledge Building

Collective Inquiry and Knowledge Building
Technology can enhance how students learn when they work with all the students in their ...

Design-Based Implementation Research

DBIR was developed by education researchers in response to evidence that research-based innovations are often ...



**A CIRCL primer is overview of what has been learned on a big idea topic, not a comprehensive literature review. The intended audience includes proposal writers, educators, developers, and journalists with popular press.

  • For a proposal writer unfamiliar with a particular topic, a primer should provide awareness of relevant prior research and important challenges.
  • For a developer, a primer should help them decide if this is a knowledge base that could potentially help them with their product.
  • For a journalist or policy maker, primers give a sense of what prior research has accomplished.

Primers are developed by small teams of volunteers from the cyberlearning community, reviewed by CIRCL staff and other experts in the area, revised as needed, and then published on the CIRCL web site under a Creative Commons license.

To learn more about primers and our process, see So You Want to Write a Primer?

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