And Intel, in a Web document urging schools to buy computers for every student, acknowledges that “there are no longitudinal, randomized trials linking eLearning to positive learning outcomes.” Yet it nonetheless argues that research shows that technology can lead to more engaged and economically successful students, happier teachers and more involved parents.
Of course there are no longitudinal studies on e-learning. Longitudinal studies are done over time, and since e-learning is a relatively new field, the data over time is not in yet. But that doesn't disprove technology's effect on learning.
However, it is important to evaluate e-learning platforms for their potential effectiveness, rather than adopting e-learning tools willy nilly. I jury is still out on the most effective way to present learning online, but I'm excited to be a part of the discovery.