Conceptually, e-learning is broadly synonymous with instructional technology, information and communication technology (ICT) in education, EdTech, learning technology multimedia learning, technology-enhanced learning (TEL), computer-based instruction (CBI), computer managed instruction, computer-based training (CBT), computer-assisted instruction or computer-aided instruction (CAI), internet-based training (IBT), flexible learning, web-based training (WBT), online education, virtual education, virtual learning environments (VLE) (which are also called learning platforms), m-learning, and digital education. In usage, all of these terms appear in articles and reviews; "e-learning" is used frequently.
These alternative terms are all more restrictive than educational technology in that they refer to the use of modern tools, such as computers, digital technology, electronic media, networked digital devices and associated software and courseware with learning scenarios, worksheets and interactive exercises that facilitate learning. These alternative names individually emphasize a particular digitization approach, component or delivery method. However, each conflates to the broad domain of educational technology. For example, m-learningemphasizes mobility, but is otherwise indistinguishable in principle from educational technology.
History, theory, types of media and information and communication technologies, and usage settings
Bernard Luskin, an educational technology pioneer, advocated that the "e" of e-learning should be interpreted to mean "exciting, energetic, enthusiastic, emotional, extended, excellent, and educational" in addition to "electronic."  Parks suggested that the "e" should refer to "everything, everyone, engaging, easy". These broad interpretations focus on new applications and developments, as well as learning theory and media psychology.