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Comunicar Journal 62: Learning ecologies in the digital age (Vol. 28 - 2020)

Digital learning ecologies and professional development of university professors


Mercedes González-Sanmamed

Iris Estévez

Alba Souto-Seijo

Pablo-César Muñoz-Carril


This study analyses the extent to which faculty use the technological resources that make up their Learning Ecologies to encourage their teacher professional development. The interest of this research is the growing impact of Learning Ecologies as a framework to examine the multiple learning opportunities provided by the complex digital landscape. Global data referred to the use of technological resources grouped in three dimensions (Access, Search and Information Management resources, Creation and Content Editing resources, and Interaction and Communication resources) has been identified. In addition, the influence of different variables such as gender, age, years of teaching experience and the branch of knowledge were also examined. The methodology used has been quantitative through a survey. The sample consisted of 1,652 faculty belonging to 50 Spanish universities. To meet the aim of the study, descriptive and inferential analysis (ANOVA) were carried out. On the one hand, it is noted a moderate use of technological resources for professional development and, on the other hand, significant differences are observed on all variables analysed. The results warn of the need to promote, both at individual and institutional level, more enriched Learning Ecologies, in such a way that each teacher can take better advantage of the learning opportunities, provided by the networked society.


Continuing education, teacher education, professional development, university teachers, higher education, learning ecologies, technological resources, informal learning

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