Competencies and Indicators - AECT Standards, 2012 Version

AECT Standard 1 - Content Knowledge

AECT Standard 1 (Content Knowledge): Candidates demonstrate the knowledge necessary to create, use, assess, and manage theoretical and practical applications of educational technologies and processes.


  • Creating - Candidates demonstrate the ability to create instructional materials and learning environments using a variety of systems approaches. (p. 81)
  • Using - Candidates demonstrate the ability to select and use technological resources and processes to support student learning and to enhance their pedagogy. (p. 141)
  • Assessing/Evaluating - Candidates demonstrate the ability to assess and evaluate the effective integration of appropriate technologies and instructional materials.
  • Managing - Candidates demonstrate the ability to effectively manage people, processes, physical infrastructures, and financial resources to achieve predetermined goals. (p. 178)
  • Ethics - Candidates demonstrate the contemporary professional ethics of the field as defined and developed by the Association for Educational Communications and Technology. (p. 284)

AECT Standard 2 - Content Pedagogy

AECT Standard 2 (Content Pedagogy): Candidates develop as reflective practitioners able to demonstrate effective implementation of educational technologies and processes based on contemporary content and pedagogy.


  • Creating - Candidates apply content pedagogy to create appropriate applications of processes and technologies to improve learning and performance outcomes. (p. 1)
  • Using - Candidates implement appropriate educational technologies and processes based on appropriate content pedagogy. (p. 141)
  • Assessing/Evaluating - Candidates demonstrate an inquiry process that assesses the adequacy of learning and evaluates the instruction and implementation of educational technologies and processes grounded in reflective practice. (p. 116-117)
  • Managing - Candidates manage appropriate technological processes and resources to provide supportive learning communities, create flexible and diverse learning environments, and develop and demonstrate appropriate content pedagogy. (p. 175-193)
  • Ethics - Candidates design and select media, technology, and processes

AECT Standard 3 - Learning Environments

AECT Standard 3 (Learning Environments): Candidates facilitate learning by creating, using, evaluating, and managing effective learning environments. (p. 1, 41)


  • Creating - Candidates create instructional design products based on learning principles and research-based best practices. (pp. 8, 243-245, 246)
  • Using - Candidates make professionally sound decisions in selecting appropriate processes and resources to provide optimal conditions for learning based on principles, theories, and effective practices. (pp. 8-9, 122, 168-169, 246)
  • Assessing/Evaluating - Candidates use multiple assessment strategies to collect data for informing decisions to improve instructional practice, learner outcomes, and the learning environment. (pp. 5-6, 53)
  • Managing - Candidates establish mechanisms for maintaining the technology infrastructure to improve learning and performance. (p. 190, 234, 238)
  • Ethics - Candidates foster a learning environment in which ethics guide practice that promotes health, safety, best practice, and respect for copyright, Fair Use, and appropriate open access to resources. (p. 3, 246)
  • Diversity of Learners - Candidates foster a learning community that empowers learners with diverse backgrounds, characteristics, and abilities. (p. 10)

AECT Standard 4 - Professional Knowledge and Skills

AECT Standard 4 (Professional Knowledge and Skills): Candidates design, develop, implement, and evaluate technology-rich learning environments within a supportive community of practice.


  • Collaborative Practice - Candidates collaborate with their peers and subject matter experts to analyze learners, develop and design instruction, and evaluate its impact on learners.
  • Leadership - Candidates lead their peers in designing and implementing technology-supported learning.
  • Reflection on Practice - Candidates analyze and interpret data and artifacts and reflect on the effectiveness of the design, development and implementation of technology-supported instruction and learning to enhance their professional growth.
  • Assessing/Evaluating - Candidates design and implement assessment and evaluation plans that align with learning goals and instructional activities.
  • Ethics - Candidates demonstrate ethical behavior within the applicable cultural context during all aspects of their work and with respect for the diversity of learners in each setting.

AECT Standard 5 - Research

AECT Standard 5 (Research): Candidates explore, evaluate, synthesize, and apply methods of inquiry to enhance learning and improve performance (pp. 4, 6-7).


  • Theoretical Foundations - Candidates demonstrate foundational knowledge of the contribution of research to the past and current theory of educational communications and technology. (p. 242)
  • Method - Candidates apply research methodologies to solve problems and enhance practice. (p. 243)
  • Assessing/Evaluating - Candidates apply formal inquiry strategies in assessing and evaluating processes and resources for learning and performance. (p. 203)
  • Ethics - Candidates conduct research and practice using accepted professional and institutional guidelines and procedures. (p. 296-7)

About the AECT Standards 2012

The standards adopted in July 2012 resulted from a five-year process of development and vetting to have standards that are derived from the definition of the field published in 2008:

Educational technology is the study and ethical practice of facilitating learning and improving performance by creating, using, and managing appropriate technological processes and resources.

AECT has had standards (or guidelines as they were earlier called) for professional programs since the 1970s, developed in part as one of the first organizations involved in the formation of National Association for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). While AECT is no longer an official accrediting body, it maintains its standards to provide rigorous guidelines for educational programs aimed at professionals in the field. These new standards supersede the older standards, including the previous version adopted in 2000 and revised in 2005.

1 NOTE: Parenthetical page references are to:
Januszewski, A., Molenda, M., & Harris, P. (Eds.). (2008). Educational technology: A definition with commentary (2nd ed.). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.