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Technology in education: efficacies and outcomes of different delivery methods

Malissa Maria Mahmud (Sunway University, Subang Jaya, Malaysia)
Bradley Freeman (Sunway University, Subang Jaya, Malaysia)
Mohd Syuhaidi Abu Bakar (Universiti Teknologi MARA, Shah Alam, Malaysia)

Interactive Technology and Smart Education

ISSN: 1741-5659

Article publication date: 5 August 2021

Issue publication date: 10 February 2022




With the arrival of the 4th Industrial Revolution and the Education 4.0 era, the inevitability of educators using technology in the classroom has grown. A global health pandemic has hastened the adoption of online teaching. The interdependence of technologies and pedagogies necessitates vigour and variability, along with evolving teaching and learning practices. Past literature has advocated for various roles and forms of technology in education; however, inconsistencies in “blended learning” definitions have posed challenges in understanding blended learning’s full potential. Thus, a quantitative meta-analysis was conducted to examine the efficacies and outcomes of blended learning.


A quantitative meta-analysis was conducted to examine the efficacies and outcomes of blended learning. A total of 96 samples were carefully chosen based on established theoretical definitions, relevant to technology use. The samples were then placed into three categories: Web-based applications, standalone applications and devices. Effect sizes (ESs) acquired from Cohen’s d formula (1988; 1992) were used to determine overall effectiveness. The ES of individuals in each of the delivery platform categories was totalled and averaged. This combined ES was then interpreted using Cohen’s (1988) benchmark. Subsequently, a combination of ESs was compared based on the similar type of delivery method, as well as the dependent variables in which the average of the respective combined ESs was calculated for interpretation.


Findings show that all three delivery methods were effective in enhancing a learner’s performance, especially for language teaching and learning. The study provides insights that can assist stakeholders in selecting different delivery platforms to befit the needs of discrete disciplines.


The researchers recommend the three categories of technological intervention described above as tangible tenets for future research in blended learning implementation. Thus far, no blended learning researcher has attempted to categorize the myriad of technological interventions available into concrete, concise groupings. With the recommended categories of technological intervention, blended learning practitioners would have a better sense of direction in the context of investigating the effectiveness of a specific intervention implemented. The researchers deem the recommended categories of technological intervention as immensely useful for the blended learning community to begin establishing intervention as one of the important elements to look at. For example, the effectiveness of a technological intervention under both the Web-based application and standalone application categories, respectively, in relation to a similar dependent variable can be compared to further understand the implications of using interventions of a different nature. And such studies will need to extend the investigation to the present by examining all recent studies.



Mahmud, M.M., Freeman, B. and Abu Bakar, M.S. (2022), "Technology in education: efficacies and outcomes of different delivery methods", Interactive Technology and Smart Education, Vol. 19 No. 1, pp. 20-38.



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