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Is There A Digital Divide?

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  1. Is There A Digital Divide? Studies in Post-Secondary Settings Keith Coutu

  2. “Student and Faculty intergenerational digital divide: Fact of Fiction?” • Florin D. Salajan; Dieter J. Schonwetter & Blaine M. Cleghorn • “Digital Divide? Student and staff Perceptions of information and communication technologies” • Jenny Waycott; Sue Bennett; Gregor Kennedy; Barney Dalgamo & Kathleen Gray • Studies conducted in University setting • Is there an age related gap? • Student vs. Staff/Faculty • Focus is on individual perceptions and opinions • Different methods but yielded similar results Introduction

  3. UofT, Faculty of Dentistry • Freshman students; 06/07 Academic Year • Faculty and Students’ perceptions towards the implementation of digital learning technologies • Methods = pre/post surveys • Surveys used the Likert Scale (1 “Not at all – 5 “Very much so”) • Faculty and students had similar surveys • Focus was on Bandura’s self-efficacy and individual experiences with technology • Self-perception and self-awareness of using technology “Student and Faculty intergenerational digital divide: Fact of Fiction?”

  4. “[T]he wholesale grouping of technology users into only two distinct categories is somewhat problematic” • Results: • No definitive distinction between students and faculty members • Students seem more proficient • A division between digital natives and digital immigrants is still blurred. • Limitation: • Small scale is difficult to generalize • Self-efficacy is a state of mind “Student and Faculty intergenerational digital divide: Fact of Fiction?”

  5. Three Australian Universities • Melbourne; Wollongong & Charles Stuart • Late 06/Early 07 – volunteers • Student and Staff perspectives on the use of ICTs (everyday use and as learning tools) • Methods: • Individual Interviews and Focus Groups • Audio recorded and transcribed verbatim • Data was coded and divided into categories • Results were divided into: • What and how technology is used everyday • How technologies are used in higher education and its benefits and limitations “Digital Divide? Student and staff Perceptions of information and communication technologies”

  6. “Overall, students and staff made few explicit references to Web 2.0 technologies” • Results • In Everyday life: • Some concluded there is a difference between “living” and “learning”; others saw the boundaries are blurred • In Higher-Ed: • Supports communication, access to information, flexible use of resources • Limitations include: usability issues, replaces face-to-face, learning how to use the technology “Digital Divide? Student and staff Perceptions of information and communication technologies”

  7. “Student and Faculty intergenerational digital divide: Fact of Fiction?” • Study concedes there are age related differences, however they are minimal • Inter-generational dynamics are more complex than the perceived digital native/immigrant divide • “Digital Divide? Student and staff Perceptions of information and communication technologies” • Findings do not support there is a substantial gap between adept younger students and less savvy teachers • It is simplistic to portray staff as resistant to using new technology and students as more likely to embrace it • More research is required • Self perception and apparent skills are distinctly different • Simply identifying digital natives and digital immigrants may be unjustified and too vague Conclusions