Call for Papers on Mobile Tech, Learning, and Achievement, for Journal Contemporary Educational Psychology

See PDF of CEP SI Mobile Learning Call here


Call for Papers: Mobile Technology, Learning, and Achievement: A Critical Perspective on the Role of Mobile Technology in Education

Journal: Contemporary Educational Psychology

Guest editors: Matthew L. Bernacki, University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Jeffrey A. Greene, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Helen Crompton, Old Dominion University



The purpose of this special issue of Contemporary Educational Psychology (CEP) is to rigorously investigate the affordances and challenges of mobile and wearable technologies as platforms for both measuring and inducing processes that foster achievement and learning. Such tools hold great promise as a way to collect online, measures of learner functioning, from non-intrusive biometrics through direct-contact interaction data. They also can serve as educational tools, prompting learners as well as affecting the learning environment. At the same time, mobile technology presents new challenges and new hindrances to effective education, particularly when such technology is used without grounding in learning and learning theory.

In this special issue, the goal will be to take a critical-analytic approach to empirical research on the affordances and hindrances of mobile and wearable technology in education, and to integrate the emerging tradition of m-learning theory with psychological models of theories of learning and instruction. To ensure a critical-analytic frame (see Alexander, 2014, Educational Psychology Review, Table 1), viable proposals for research must include research questions investigating both positive and negative possible effects of mobile technology. Designs spanning quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods are encouraged, as are studies conducted in authentic, ecologically-valid contexts.

Articles accepted for this Special Issue will demonstrate, through empirical studies, how mobile and wearable technologies:

  • affect learning via interactions with other psychological constructs;
  • afford new opportunities to directly influence learning process or outcomes;
  • present new challenges to educators and learners; and/or
  • serve as platforms for collecting data to understand learning.

Further, we challenge Special Issue authors to integrate psychological theories of learning and instruction with emerging theories of mobile learning. Authors will:

  • conceptualize studies in alignment with an extant theory of learning and instruction;
  • introduce and incorporate aspects of mobile learning theory into the conceptualization of their work; and
  • take a critical-analytic stance to interpret their findings as they refine and integrate these theories.


Timeline and Submission/Review Process

Authors who wish to submit a manuscript for the Special Issue must first, by May 15, 2018, submit a 1-2 page summary of the manuscript under development. The summary should include:

  • a brief description of the completed empirical study,
  • a conceptualization that aligns the work to both theories specific to mobile learning and broader theories of learning
  • the specific research design and methods used, and
  • an argument for the appropriateness of the study for the Special Issue.

The review criteria include:

  • Importance of the topic and findings
  • Alignment of research with Special Issue foci
  • Strong theoretical foundations for the scholarship
  • Critical-analytic approach investigating both the potential affordances and challenges of mobile technology
  • Appropriateness of research design
  • Rigor of methodology
  • Critical discussion of implications for aligning and/or integrating theories of (m-)learning and instruction, design, and practice, including syntheses of m-learning and psychological learning theory
  • Writing quality
  • Interest to CEP readership

Guest editors will review and respond to all summary submissions. They will determine which authors will be invited to submit a full manuscript. Invited manuscripts will be due on October 1, 2018 via CEP’s online submission management system. These manuscripts will be evaluated by at least two external reviewers, with at least one those reviewers being a CEP editorial board member. The Guest Editors will review all manuscripts for quality, synthesize all external reviews, and make final editorial decisions. All accepted manuscripts must meet the review criteria, listed above, as well as all of CEP’s standards for publication.

Please submit summaries and questions about the special issue to Matt Bernacki (

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