The British Journal of Educational Technology (BJET) has been active in the field of educational technology since 1970. To celebrate its 50th anniversary and to demonstrate a comprehensive overview of the field, we conducted a bibliometric analysis of the 3710 publications in this journal from 1971 to 2018 as indexed in the Web of Science with full bibliographic information. This study aimed to (1) identify the publication and citation trends, (2) explore the distribution of paper types, (3) recognize the most relevant countries/regions, affiliations and authors, and (4) reveal relevant thematic features by analyzing publication abstracts and titles with the use of word cloud analysis and topic modeling analysis. The results highlighted several research hotspots and emerging topics such as Technology‐enhanced classroom pedagogy, Blended learning, Online social communities, Mobile assisted language learning, Game‐based learning and Socialized e‐learning. Copyright © 2020 British Educational Research Association.