An Analysis of the Research and Impact of ICT in Education in Developing Country Contexts


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Type of work: Article (academic)


Education | ICT4D


Despite evidence of increased usage of information and communication technology (ICT) in educational programming, extant evaluations on the impact of ICT on educational child outcomes are sparse and often lack the methodological rigor necessary to guide policymakers towards sound, evidence-based practices. The American Institutes for Research (AIR) has conducted a global analysis of research undertaken to date on the deployment of ICT solutions to support education goals in developing countries. The present study is comprised of two phases. First, a series of in-depth, structured interviews were conducted with a range of stakeholders, including policymakers and academicians, researchers, users and developers of ICT solutions. These interviews touched upon the challenges associated with developing, implementing and evaluating ICT solutions within educational settings, perceptions on the utility and future of ICT solutions and extant gaps in the usage of ICT solutions within developing countries. Second, AIR conducted a detailed literature review of published and unpublished evaluations on the educational impacts of ICT solutions. This paper reports on the demonstrated and measurable impacts of ICT on students and generates an innovative and rigorous research agenda addressing salient issues such as impact and effectiveness, return on investment, and total cost of ownership.