Educational design research

Susan McKenney, Thomas C. Reeves

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review

138 Citations (Scopus)
187 Downloads (Pure)


Educational design research is a genre of research in which the iterative development of solutions to practical and complex educational problems provides the setting for scientific inquiry. The solutions can be educational products, processes, programs, or policies. Educational design research not only targets solving significant problems facing educational practitioners but at the same time seeks to discover new knowledge that can inform the work of others facing similar problems. Working systematically and simultaneously toward these dual goals is perhaps the most defining feature of educational design research. This chapter seeks to clarify the nature of educational design research by distinguishing it from other types of inquiry conducted in the field of educational communications and technology. Examples of design research conducted by different researchers working in the field of educational communications and technology are described. The chapter concludes with a discussion of several important issues facing educational design researchers as they pursue future work using this innovative research approach.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook of research on educational communications and technology
EditorsJ. Michael Spector, M. David Merrill, Jan Elen, M.J. Bishop
Place of PublicationNew York
ISBN (Print)978-1-4614-3184-8
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Publication series



  • METIS-308926
  • IR-82038


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