Digital Learning Materials After Pandemic as Part of the School Routine? Alenka Kepic Mohar and Miha Kovač
Summary: Although they have been included in the textbook approval process (Rules on the approval of textbooks, OJ RS 34/15) since 2011, the role, use and importance of digital learning materials in Slovenia are not equal to those of printed textbooks. Reasons for this are the way digital learning materials were created in Slovenia before pandemic, and their current position in the textbook supply system. This, however, cannot explain completely their weak use before the pandemic, knowing the fact that they were widely accessible and developed with the high investments of public and private funds. This article discusses the use of digital material before and during the pandemic in Slovenia, based on the empiric study of two educational portals. It also tries to determine whether the experience of distance education will promote the use of digital learning materials, change their position and contribute to their being included in the textbook supply system and thus in the regular national educational process. The empiric study of two educational portals during the pandemic exposed the fact that teachers had used digital learning materials before the crisis, but they avoided their use for homework, which shows that the use of digital materials in Slovene schools is not just a technology problem and that more complex solutions are needed. During the pandemic teachers most often used e-textbooks from publishing houses, which opens the question of the accessibility of printed textbooks financed by public funds, and indicates that we lack researches on how students learn and use printed and digital materials. Pandemia did spread use of digital material and changed teachers‘ relation to digitalization but quality education in the digital era should also observe research findings regarding the impacts of technology-based learning and teaching, support teachers with trainings and include the digital learning materials in the system supply of textbooks as part of national education strategy.