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Pages: pp. 290-290

Dear Readers,

Welcome to the last 2012 issue of the IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies ( TLT ). This issue marks the end of our fifth year of publication and the end of our tenure as the foundation editorial team. Together with our Editorial Board, we have worked hard to establish TLT as a strong archival journal in the field of modern learning technologies. We believe that we achieved this goal. The journal is now fully established. It is indexed by Thomson Reuters (ISI), tracked by Microsoft Academic Search, and, most importantly, enjoys a strong flow of excellent submissions from all areas of learning technologies. The current issue is a good example of the variety of topics that are covered by the journal.

The paper “WeFiLab: A Web-Based WiFi Laboratory Platform for Wireless Networking Education,” from a City University of Hong Kong team, is focused on one of the most popular topics in the field of engineering education—remote online laboratories. It presents an online laboratory platform, WeFiLab, that enables students to perform experiments on real devices through a web-based interface and reports the results of its evaluation.

The paper “Language and Discourse Are Powerful Signals of Student Emotions during Tutoring” is focused on affective learning, which emerged recently as one of the most popular topics in the area of intelligent educational systems. In this paper, the authors, Sidney K. D’Mello and Art Graesser, explore several methods aimed at predicting student emotions such as boredom, confusion, and frustration by analyzing the text of student and tutor dialogues in a conversational intelligent tutoring system.

The next paper, “Context-Aware Recommender Systems for Learning: A Survey and Future Challenges,” adds to a small set of review papers published by TLT over its first five years. Our journal publishes relatively few review papers, typically in cases when the topic is important and the authors are recognized experts on the subject. This paper is a good example in this category. Traditional recommender systems have already moved from research labs to industry and are emerging as an important modern technology. Educational recommender systems are now following this trend. The paper is co-authored by seven researchers coming from five countries who have established themselves as experts and leaders in this rapidly expanding area.

The paper “Multiliteracies and Active Learning in CLIL—The Development of LearnWeb2.0,” by Ivana Marenzi and Sergej Zerr, is focused on the educational application of Social Web technologies. It presents the design and evaluation of LearnWeb2.0, a web-based social information environment that supports finding, organizing, and sharing educational information.

The paper “Multiuser Virtual Environments for Learning: Experience and Technology Design,” authored by a team of Italian researchers, brings us to the area known as educational virtual reality, more specifically, multiuser virtual environments that were popularized by Second Life. The paper discusses an innovative “biological” approach that can be used to design both the educational experience and the virtual environment.

The title of the last paper ,“Design of Teacher Assistance Tools in an Exploratory Learning Environment for Algebraic Generalization,” clearly indicates the kind of learning technology it deals with—exploratory learning environments, a popular choice for science education for all kinds of audiences. In this specific paper, a team of researchers from several British universities reports on the results of their work with an innovative Teacher Assistant component of MiGen, a constructionist learning environment for algebraic generalization.

Altogether, this issue brings you six papers focused on six different kinds of “hot” learning technologies and authored by researchers residing in 10 different countries on four continents. This issue once again demonstrates both the diversity of our field, learning technologies, and the coverage of our journal. Enjoy reading it!

Wolfgang Neidl, Editor-in-Chief

Peter Brusilovsky, Associate Editor-in-Chief

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