Using Technology for Learning: Generalizable Lessons from Educational Technology Integration in Kenya


  • Adeela Arshad-Ayaz Concordia University
  • Ayaz Naseem Concordia University
  • Justus Inyega University of Nairobi



Kenyan education, Technology platforms, LTK


This paper presents some initial findings from a multi-year partnership project on the integration of technology into the Kenyan education system. Specifically, qualitative evidence is presented on how results and lessons learned from the partnership project can be generalized and used by other research teams and projects using other technology platforms. Grounded in the critical theory of educational technology and using methodological strategies on the intersections of critical discourse analysis and critical ethnography, this paper examines technology integration in Kenyan public schools using the Learning Toolkit+ developed at the Centre for the Study of Learning and Performance at Concordia University in Montreal, Canada.

Author Biographies

Adeela Arshad-Ayaz, Concordia University

Adeela Arshad-Ayaz is an Associate Professor in the Department of Education at Concordia University in Quebec, Canada. She received her Ph.D. in Comparative and International Education and Sociology of Education from McGill University. Arshad-Ayaz has published on the impact of globalization on educational policy and the impact of social media on youth’s civic engagement, and issues related to diversity in culturally pluralist societies. Her ongoing research includes (FQRSC, SSHRC, and Security Canada) funded projects on social media for civic engagement and participation, social media and cultural pluralism, and the dark side of social media: hate speech in online environments.

Ayaz Naseem, Concordia University

M. Ayaz Naseem is a Professor in the Department of Education at Concordia University in Quebec, Canada and holds a Ph.D. in Comparative and International Education from McGill University, Montreal. His research interests are situated on the cross-section of peace education, social media as space for peace education, teaching about extremism, terror, and radicalization, feminist theory and philosophy, post-structuralism, and citizenship education. He has published widely, including six books and over 75 articles and book chapters.

Justus Inyega, University of Nairobi

Justus O. Inyega is an Associate Professor in the Department of Educational Communication and Technology, School of Education, College of Education and External Studies, University of Nairobi and the Director, Centre for Pedagogy and Andragogy. Inyega holds a Ph.D. in Science Education, a Postgraduate Certificate in multidisciplinary qualitative research from the University of Georgia, USA, a Masters of Education from the University of Leeds, UK, and a Masters of Education and Bachelor of Education from Kenyatta University, Kenya.


Abrami, P., Wade, A., Lysenko, L., Marsh, J., & Gioko, A. (2014). Using educational technology to develop early literacy. Education and Information Technology, 21, 945-964.

Allen, L. R., Garst, B. A., Bowers, E. P., & Onyiko, K. K. (2017). building a youth development system in Kenya: Comparing Kenyan perceptions of local and national systems. Journal of Youth Development, 11(3), 72-88.

Ameen, S. K., Adeniji, M. S., & Abdullahi, K. (2019). Teachers’ and students’ level of utilization of ICT tools for teaching and learning mathematics in Ilorin, Nigeria. African Journal of Educational Studies in Mathematics and Sciences, 15(1), 51-59.

Arshad-Ayaz, A. (2010). Of mice and men: Educational technology in Pakistan’s public school system. Journal of Contemporary Issues in Education, 5(2), 5-23.

Bailey, B., Arciuli, J., & Stancliffe, R. J. (2016, June 20). Effects of ABRACADABRA literacy instruction on children with autism spectrum disorder. Journal of Educational Psychology, 109(2), 257-268.

Carspecken, P. (1996). Critical ethnography in educational research. Routledge.

Constitution of Kenya (2012).

Cunningham, M. (2016, September). Technology-Enhanced Learning in Kenyan Universities. IEEE Technology and Society Magazine, 35(3), 28-35.

Edo, S., Okodua, H., & Odebiyi, J. (2019). Internet adoption and financial development in sub-saharan Africa: Evidence from Nigeria and Kenya. African Development Review, 31(1), 144–160.

Fairclough, N. (1995). Critical discourse analysis: The critical study of language. London and Longman.

Feenberg, A. (2002). Transforming technology: A critical theory revisited. Oxford: OUP.

Feenberg, A. (2005). Critical theory of technology: An overview. Tailoring biotechnologies, 1(1), 47-64.

Franklin, U. (1999). The real world of technology. Revised edition. House of Anansi Press.

Gee, J. (2011). An introduction to discourse analysis: Theory and method. Routledge.

Geertz, C. (1973). The Interpretation of Cultures: Selected Essays. Basic Books.

Inyega, J., Arshad-Ayaz, A., Naseem, M., Mahaya, E., & Elsayed, D. (2021). Post-Independence Basic Education in Kenya: An Historical Analysis of Curriculum Reforms. Forum for International Research on Education.

Jepkemei, E. (5 April 2017). Curriculum Reform: Is it worth the trouble?

Jorgensen, M., & Phillips, L. (2002). Discourse analysis as theory and method. SAGE.

Kaviti, L. (2018). The New Curriculum of Education in Kenya: a Linguistic and Education Paradigm Shift. Journal of Humanities and Social Science, 2(23), 84-95.

Kenya Basic Education Act 14 (2013).

Kenya National Curriculum Policy (2015).

Kenya Vision 2030.

KICD Act (2013).

Madison, D. (2005). Critical ethnography: Methods, ethics and performance. Sage.

Naseem, M. A., & Arshad-Ayaz, A. (2016). Knowledge imperialism: Education and domination in the neo-liberal era. In K. Gray, & H. Bashir (Eds.), Eastward Bound: The politics, economics, and pedagogy of Western higher education in Asia and the Middle East. Lexington/Rowman and Littlefield.

Njeng’ere, D., & Lili, J. (2017). The why, what and how of competency-based curriculum reforms: The Kenyan Experience. In UNESCO’s Series on Current and Critical Issues in Curriculum, Learning and Assessment.

Onsomu, E., Nzomo, J., & Obiero, C. (2005). The SACMEQ II Project in Kenya: A study of the conditions of schooling and the quality of education. Harare and Nairobi: Southern and Eastern Africa Consortium for Monitoring Educational Quality (SACMEQ) and Kenya Ministry of Education, Science and Technology.

Piaget, J. (1968). Genetic Epistemology: A series of lectures delivered by Piaget at Columbia University, Published by Columbia University Press, translated by Eleanor Duckworth.

Piper, B., Suilkowski, S. S., Kwayumba, D., & Strigel, C. (2016). Does technology improve reading outcomes? Comparing the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of ICT interventions for early grade reading in Kenya. International Journal of Educational Development, 49, 204-214.

Piper, B., & Zuilkowski, S. S. (2015). Teacher coaching in Kenya: Examining instructional support in public and nonformal schools. Teaching and Teacher Education, 47, 173-183.

Steiner-Khamsi, G., & Stolpe, I. (2006). Educational import in Mongolia: Local encounters with global forces. Springer.

UWEZO. (2012). Are our children learning? Nairobi: Twaweza.

UWEZO (2014). Are our children learning? Nairobi: Twaweza.

UWEZO (2015). Are our children learning? Nairobi: Twaweza.

UWEZO (2016). Are our children learning? Nairobi: Twaweza.

Vygotsky, L. (1987). The collected works of L. S. Vygotsky. Eds. R. Rieber & A. Carton. Springer.

Wanjohi, A. M. (April 14, 2018). Critical review of 8-4-4 education system in Kenya. Schools Net Kenya.