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Blog for Mark Bullen

Spanish Study Finds Generation is Irrelevant

Posted July 9 2013 8:56 p.m.

To date the published results from the international research project, Digital Learners in Higher Education, have been based on data from one North American post secondary institution. Now we have the first results from one of our European partners, the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC). In Do UOC Students Fit the Net Generation Profile: An Approach to Their Habits in ICT Use, Marc Romero and colleagues sought to determine whether or not UOC students fit the popular Net Generation or Digital Native profile and whether there were any generational differences in how they perceived their social, academic and professional uses of ICT. Their results add to the growing body of evidence which is increasaingly showing that generation is not relevant in trying to understand the impact of digital technology in higher education. Romero et al. conclude:  "Taking into account the difference between the UOC’s Net Generation students and non-Net Generation ones regarding their use of ICT


An Asian Perspective on the Digital Learners Discourse

Posted May 10 2013 6:08 p.m.

One of our criticisms of the digital natives discourse has been that it was originally grounded almost entirely in a North American context. The critical reaction to this discourse has tended to be more geographically and culturally balanced with research coming from a number of European countries as well as Australia. To date, however, there has been little research conducted in developing countries or in Asia. David M. Kennedy and Bob Fox have started to fill that gap with their research conducted at the University of Hong Kong.In Digital natives’: An Asian perspective for using learning technologies, the authors investigated how first year undergraduate students used and understood various digital technologies. Their findings are consistent with the findings of our research: while they found the first-year undergraduate students at HKU were using a wide range of digital technologies, they also found they were using them primarily for "personal empowerment and entertainment" and


Crossing Boundaries: Digital Learners and the Social and Academic Use of Technology in Higher Education

Posted April 10 2013 5:20 a.m.

Phase 2 of the Digital Learners in Higher Education project has uncovered some important insights into how learners in higher education are thinking about and using digital technologies for social and academic purposes and how they separate and integrate their uses.We have submitted an article for publication but given how lengthy the scholarly publication process is, we have decided to release it here for feedback and comment.Crossing Boundaries: Digital Learners and the Social and Academic Use of Technology in Higher EducationTannis Morgan, Mark Bullen AbstractThis article reports on a study that used third generation Activity Theory as a framework to investigate how postsecondary students think about and use digital technologies in their social and academic lives. The results confirm the fallacy of the digital native stereotype but go further by uncovering important insights into how students at one institution can have quite different approaches to the use of digital


New Directions for the Digital Natives Discourse

Posted January 25 2013 10 p.m.

In her thoughtful analysis of the digital natives literature (The Digital Native Debate in Higher Education: A Comparative Analysis of Recent Literature), Erika Smith concludes:Much of the criticism regarding the digital native debate underscores a lack of research thatauthentically maps not only the rapidly shifting technology developments, but also the emergentnature of the perceptions and viewpoints informing the learner, educator, and researcherassumptions and beliefs underlying such debates.. She goes on to urge researchers to "move beyond the digital native debate toward other authentic understandings of today’s learners" (as we have with our Digital Learners in Higher Education project) and suggests a focus on the following questions researchers focus on the following questions:What is the role of the language in both informing and reflecting our perceptions of andexperiences with emerging technologies in education, to which Prensky (2001a) andSeely Brown (2002) allude?If there


Comparing Digital Learners in Face-to-Face and Virtual Universities

Posted November 17 2012 8:22 p.m.

The digital native/net generation hype has quieted down in recent months and thankfully has given way to an increasing amount of solid research into how learners are using digital technologies and what the impact might be of their growing social and educational use. One of the more positive features of some of the new research is that it is not just coming out of conventional North American University contexts.Beyond the Net Generation Debate: A Comparison of Digital Learners in Face-to-Face and Virtual Universities reports on research conducted by Begoña Gros, Iolanda Garcia and Anna Escofet who compared the behaviour and preferences towards ICT of face-to-face students and online students in five Spanish universities (one offers online education and four offer face-to-face education with LMS teaching support). Their research attempted to answer the following questions:What are the differences between the use of “living” technologies and “learning” technologies by younger and older


Researchers of Tomorrow Lack Digital Skills

Posted June 28 2012 5:17 p.m.

In the UK, JISC has just released a large study of the research behaviour of doctoral students born between 1982 and 1994. This is the supposedly digitally fluent "net generation". The digital natives who live and breath digital technology. Not so according to this study. Here the key findings:"This generation of doctoral students operate in an environment where their research behaviour does not use the full potential of innovative technology. Doctoral students are insufficiently trained or informed to be able to fully embrace the latest opportunities in the digital information environment.Doctoral students are increasingly reliant on secondary research resources (eg journal articles, books), moving away from primary materials (eg primary archival material and large datasets). Access to relevant resources is a major constraint for doctoral students’ progress. Open access and copyright appear to be a source of confusion for Generation Y doctoral students, rather than


Students Confused by Digital Technologies

Posted April 26 2012 8:24 p.m.

"New research, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), has revealed that some university students are confused by the array of technologies available to them during the course of their studies. The report, led by Dr Christopher Jones from the Institute of Educational Technology at The Open University, also found that whilst many students are distracted by social networking sites during study, a small minority of their peers do not even use e-mail."

Read more: href="http://www.scienceomega.com/article/301/is-the-net-generation-a-myth#ixzz1t9jXjBjh" style="text-decoration: none;">http://www.scienceomega.com/article/301/is-the-net-generation-a-myth#ixzz1t9jXjBjh


The New Net Generation Myth

Posted April 20 2012 9:06 p.m.

I guess it was bound to happen. As new technologies develop and spread, new myths are created.  We have had 10 years of unfounded hype about the "net generation" which we were told was fundamentally different than previous generations because of its exposure to digital technology. Never mind that most of these claims are not supported by research. Now we have many of the same claims being made but about the specific impact of mobile technologies and as a result we have new generational labels like the "mobile generation" or the "re-generation".According to Tammy Erickson, in How Mobile Technologies are Shaping a New Generation, "the "Re-Generation" began to take shape around 2008. Individuals at the formative ages of 11 to 13, those born after about 1995, were part of a substantively different world than the one that had shaped 11 to 13 year olds over the preceding fifteen or so years...they are the first unconscious participants in an era when everyone has access to


The Role of Digital Technology in Learning

Posted March 24 2012 12:06 a.m.

Here's another study that suggests student use of digital technology in higher education is more complex and nuanced that the net gen discourse suggests. Gabriel et al's approach and findings are very similar to ours in the Digital Learners in Higher Education project. Among other things, like us, they found differences in how students thought about and used digital technologies in their academic and non-academic live:"Students' most frequent use of technology outside of school was email, Internet, social media, texting on cell phones, instant messaging, and talking on cell phones. The focus was on communication and socializing with others. The students' most frequent use of digital technologies in school were (in descending order) accessing information on the Internet, using email, word processing, math and science programs, texting on cell phones, and accessing electronic databases. In school, the students tended to use digital technologies to collect, select, and work with


Students Oppose Online Learning in Ontario

Posted February 23 2012 8:05 p.m.

It's interesting that some of the most outspoken criticism of Ontario's plans to use more online learning in higher education is coming from.....students. Weren't we told that today's learners want more technology and less lecturing? That the current model of education is outmoded and that students wouldn't put up with it anymore?From the Canadian Federation of Students:"The fact that they're talking about such a massive overhaul without having reached out to faculty or students is cause for concern," said president Sandy Hudson."To think that three in five of all courses — the majority of courses in a year that students would be doing — would be online, that is definitely harming the quality of education," she added."If this is a measure to save money ... how far behind are Ontario students going to be with the rest of the country, with the rest of the world, if most of the learning that we're doing isn't even in front of a lecturer that we can then approach for assistance?"So much


Understanding Digital Learners

Posted January 18 2012 5:11 p.m.

David White and his colleagues at Oxford University are doing some interesting research that parallels what we have been doing in our http://digitallearners.ca/">Digital Learners in Higher Education project. Like us, they are finding there is much more to how learners are engaging with digital technologies and digital information than age and technology. This interview provides an overview of their findings to date and explains the digital visitors and residents framework that is guiding their research.


Profiles of Use: Resistors to Integrators

Posted November 18 2011 11:15 p.m.

One of the major problems with the digital native discourse is that it frames digital literacy in generational terms and portrays all people of a certain age as possessing a uniform set of digital technology skills. Of course, we now know this is not accurate. Research shows the issue is much more complex. Our research is contributing to a deeper understanding of how learners think about and use digital technology in different aspects of their lives. Our preliminary analysis of the in-depth interviews we conducted with learners from the British Columbia Institute of Technology in 2010 and 2011 is suggesting a continuum of four "profiles of use" with the profile consisting of attitudes towards technology and use of technology. The profiles are:ResistorsResistors deliberately limit their use of digital technology or avoid it all together. They would rather be doing other things, or are in a phase of returning to the ‘basics’, engaging in alternative practices such as letter writing


Google and Pearson Offer a Free LMS

Posted October 15 2011 12:29 a.m.

They say there's no such thing as a free lunch but what about a free LMS?
"Today Pearson, the publishing and learning technology group, has joined the software giant Google to launch OpenClass, a free LMS that combines standard course-management tools with advanced social networking and community-building, and an open architecture that allows instructors to import whatever material they wa


What is the Future of Learning in Canada?

Posted October 13 2011 8:03 p.m.

The Canadian Council on Learning (CCL) has published their http://www.ccl-cca.ca/pdfs/CEOCorner/2010-10-11WhatistheFutureofLearninginCanada.pdf">final report on lifelong learning conditions in Canada. The report contains 71 pages, however the section on Post-Secondary Education is an interesting read, reporting on issues such as funding, quality of educators and troubling trends, whic


Canadian universities must reform or perish

Posted October 13 2011 7:47 p.m.


Educational Technology User's Group (eTUG) 2011 Fall Workshop - Call for proposals

Posted September 27 2011 11:14 p.m.

See the Call For Proposals for the 2011 eTUG Fall Workshop: “You Are Here: Supporting mindful journeys in our practice”. The workshop will be held at Kwantlen Polytechnic University's Richmond campus on Friday, November 4, 2011.

The proposal deadline is Monday, October 3, 2011.

What is eTUG?

BC's Educational Te


Emerging Practice in a Digital Age

Posted September 6 2011 6:21 p.m.

It is refreshing to read a report on the use of digital technologies in education that doesn't frame the issue in generational terms. http://www.jisc.ac.uk/media/documents/programmes/elearning/digiemerge/Emergingpracticeaccessible.pdf">Emerging Practice in a Digital Age provides a very useful and interesting summary of 10 case studies of emerging practice using digital technologies in


Emerging Practice in a Digital Age

Posted September 6 2011 5:48 p.m.

The British learning technology organization JISC has released an interesting report, http://www.jisc.ac.uk/media/documents/programmes/elearning/digiemerge/Emergingpracticeaccessible.pdf">Emerging Practice in a Digital Age, that brings together 10 cases studies of emerging practice with digital technologies. The cases studies are organized into three themes:

1. Working in p


The Sad State of Educational Research

Posted September 1 2011 11:32 p.m.


Will Practice Catch up to Research?

Posted August 17 2011 8:25 p.m.

Two items that appeared in my news reader this week that make me wonder about the educational profession. First there was this one:

href="http://www.agent4change.net/resources/research/1088">"Open University Research Explodes the Myth of the Digital Native"
It's not like we need any more evidence to put this discredited discourse to bed but this study does more than simply a


ED-MEDIA Helps Put the Nail in the "Digital Natives" Coffin

Posted August 11 2011 5:24 p.m.

One of the highlights of the href="http://www.aace.org/conf/edmedia/">EDMEDIA 2011 conference in Lisbon has been the number of presentations on research into the use of digital technologies in higher education that acknowledge the complete lack of empirical support for the digital native rhetoric.

Here are the relevant presentations:

<a href="http://www.blogger.com/go


And the beat goes on....

Posted August 5 2011 8:17 p.m.

 While futurists and pundits continue to crank out the books portraying the "digital native" as some kind of newly-discovered tribe whose habits, language and culture we need to understand (see, for example, href="http://infotoday.stores.yahoo.net/dancing-with-digital-natives.html">Dancing with Digital Natives), researchers continue to show how unfounded the generational claims are. An


Making Meetings Useful

Posted August 5 2011 7:27 p.m.

Joel Mitchell of the Vancouver Sun writes about a new book on a topic that all of us can relate to: meetings. Does this sound familiar:

"Meetings are taking over our businesses and keeping us from actually getting the work done. Meetings are the reason cartoons like Dilbert and TV shows like The Office exist (and why they are so funny... or sad). Let's face it: meetings not only s


Digital Learners not Digital Natives

Posted July 8 2011 10:05 p.m.

It appears the tide is finally turning and the uncritical acceptance of the digital natives discourse is giving way to a more nuanced perspective on digital technologies in higher education. http://www.cjlt.ca/index.php/cjlt/article/view/550/298">The research has clearly demonstrated that this is not a generational issue but rather a social phenomenon t


The Writing Commons

Posted June 22 2011 8:03 p.m.

This looks like a very valuable resource for students and others looking for help and support with writing.

Here's an excerpt from href="http://writingcommons.com/">the Writing Commons mission statement:
"Writing Commons aspires to be a community for writers, a creative learning space for students in courses that require college-level writing, a creative, interactive s


Australian Study Finds Generation is Irrelevant

Posted June 22 2011 7:11 p.m.


Kno Positions Itself As iPad Textbook Supplier

Posted June 6 2011 7:33 p.m.

Kno officially launches today touting a library of over 70,000 textbooks at 30-50% off hard copy prices. Textbooks are specifically formatted for the iPad. It's just a matter of time before the competitors emerge but the integration of social, note taking abilities and rental options makes this one to watch.

Launch Commercial - <a href="http://vimeo.com/22242451">http://vimeo.com/2224


Google Scholar

Posted May 27 2011 4:02 p.m.

Have a paper to write? A course to develop? Want to investigate possible plagiarism in course content? Let Google Scholar and its Advanced Scholar Search feature help guide you to the info you seek.

Find articles containing exact words or phrases, written by specific authors or between certain dates. With options to filter by subject area, patents, and/or legal opinions it helps c


Developing Online Courses: An Exciting Milestone!

Posted May 18 2011 11:12 p.m.

Since the development and launch of the href="http://onlinedevelopment.wordpress.com/">Developing Online Courses blog site (January, 2010) there have been over 5,000 individual site visits!

This resource is a valuable tool for those instructors involved in online course development for the first time, as well as veterans who are looking for templates and checklists to make the t


A Social Media Privacy Guide for Post Secondary Institutions

Posted May 13 2011 10:47 p.m.

Vancouver Island University with support from BC Campus has developed a privacy guide for <!-- / Font Definitions /@font-face {font-family:Cambria; panose-1:2 4 5 3 5 4 6 3 2 4; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:3 0 0 0 1 0;} / Style Definitions /p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal {mso-style-parent:""; margin:0in; margin-bottom:


Technology as the Architect of Self: Implications for Higher Education

Posted May 13 2011 10:32 p.m.

Sherry Turkle is one of the most thoughtful commentators on the impact of digital technology on society. Here is a href="http://ctevents.1105cms01.com/events/virtual-conference/home.aspx">presentation she gave at the recent Campus Technology conference.

"With a special focus on our evolving and technology-infused higher education environments, Turkle will consid


Google Unveils Chromebook

Posted May 13 2011 8:28 p.m.

Google's newly unveiled Chromebook could be a huge blow to the traditional operating system while dramatically reducing costs and effort required to upgrade, maintain and secure user machines.

That is if you trust the cloud. href="http://www.montrealgazette.com/technology/Cloud+computing+Sony+breach/4764560/story.html">Recent breaches at Sony's PlayStation network amongst othe


Key trends: Mobile, online and blended learning and e-books

Posted April 28 2011 5:57 p.m.

Here's href="http://www.tomorrow.org/speakup/pdfs/SU10_3EofEducation_Students.pdf">another report on trends in educational technology. href="http://www.tomorrow.org/speakup/pdfs/SU10_3EofEducation_Students.pdf">The New 3E's of Education: Enabled, Engaged and Empowered is from the US K-12 sector but it provides a glimpse of the kind of students who will be entering postsecondary. It


The New 3 E’s of Education: Enabled, Engaged and Empowered

Posted April 28 2011 4:40 p.m.

Here's href="http://www.tomorrow.org/speakup/pdfs/SU10_3EofEducation_Students.pdf">another report on trends in educational technology. href="http://www.tomorrow.org/speakup/pdfs/SU10_3EofEducation_Students.pdf">The New 3E's of Education: Enabled, Engaged and Empowered is from the US K-12 sector but it provides a glimpse of the kind of students who will be entering postsecondary. It a


The Scholary Publishing Process Finally Catches Up

Posted April 21 2011 11:31 p.m.

We finished writing this article back in December 2009. Fifteen months later it has finally been published in the http://www.cjlt.ca/">Canadian Journal of Learning Technology. We released a pre-publication version several months ago so if you read that, there is nothing new here. For the record, here is the publication version of <a href="http://www.cjlt.ca/index.php/cjlt/article/view


Instructional Design Event

Posted April 20 2011 11:18 p.m.

The University of British Columbia is hosting an http://blogs.ubc.ca/idnetwork.">Instructional Design Event on May 13.
"The goal of this half-day event is to bring together individuals who are working as instructional designers within a variety of fields/educational sector groups (e.g., K-12, public sector, private, post-secondary) for the purposes of:
- sharing ideas/challe


Mobile Computing Event

Posted April 20 2011 4:39 p.m.

 EDUCAUSE is putting on what it calls "a focused learning opportunity" dealing with mobile computing:

"Perhaps no area of higher education IT is evolving more rapidly. Colleges and universities are making important decisions about mobile computing and how it can be incorporated into effective technology programs—today and tomorrow.

To bring the community together on


Learning to Teach Online

Posted April 19 2011 7:10 p.m.

The University of New South Wales in Australia has produced http://online.cofa.unsw.edu.au/learning-to-teach-online/ltto-episodes">an interesting set of video and PDF resources that address key elements of teaching online. Eight topics are covered in 5-6 minute videos:
1. Why is online teaching important
2. Conducting effective online discussions
3. Managing your time w


Salman Khan: Let's use video to reinvent education

Posted March 28 2011 5:02 p.m.

"You've just got a glimpse at the future of education." This quote from Bill Gates following a standing ovation at a recent TED conference. The speaker Salman Khan speaks on a range of topics surrounding the Khan Academy software and the schools utilizing his training videos.

<a href="http://www.ted.com/talks/salman_khan_let_s_use_video_to_reinvent_education.html">http://www.ted.com/t


Systemic Shredding?

Posted March 12 2011 10:10 p.m.

According tohttp://www.downes.ca/post/55010"> Stephen Downes, href="http://etcjournal.com/2011/03/10/7478/">Jim Shimabukuro,  does a "systemic shredding" of my research and other research that is reaching the same conclusions. Well, if by "systemic shredding", he means attacking my motives, misreading our research and selectively choosing the statements and conclusions tha


Another Dutch Study Fails to Find the Net Generation

Posted March 9 2011 9:20 p.m.

I missed http://bit.ly/i22oyb">this article when it was first published late last year but likehref="http://www.netgenskeptic.com/2011/03/no-net-generation-in-netherlands.html"> the one I reported on yesterday, it also comes from the Netherlands and also concludes that framing the issue of digital technology use in terms of generation is simplistic and misleading.



No Net Generation in the Netherlands

Posted March 8 2011 10:14 p.m.

Researchers in the Netherlands went looking for the net generation and they came up empty-handed. In <a href="http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6VCJ-5281SGH-2&_user=10&_coverDate=02%2F24%2F2011&_rdoc=1&_fmt=high&_orig=gateway&_origin=gateway&_sort=d&_docanchor=&view=c&_searchStrId=1669949654&_rerunOrigin=scholar.google&_ac


The I-Pad 2

Posted March 2 2011 7:35 p.m.

Apple certainly knows how to design devices that combine functionality and esthetics. The new I-Pad 2 adds some features that everybody said were missing from the original I-Pad (cameras, video mirroring), it's thinner and lighter and has an ingenious magnetic cover. However, Apple is still maintaining a tight control over content and deliberately sacrificing usability in the pursuit of profit by


The Paperless Rationale for Technology

Posted March 2 2011 7:14 p.m.

I have some concerns about the "going paperless" rationale for using more technology in the classroom. While there may be environmental benefits (there are questions about this if students simply print out the documents), I worry that the technology will simply be used to replicate old models of teaching. href="http://chronicle.com/blogs/profhacker/going-paperless-in-the-classroom/31402">This a


Using Interactive Objects throughout the Learning Process

Posted February 22 2011 7:08 p.m.

It is common practice to use interactive objects as a way to revisit material that has already been taught. For example, a drag-and-drop activity to label the parts of the human heart is a useful way to reinforce students’ knowledge of that area. While this is an important use of interactivity, the same object can be of greater value when used throughout the learning process.
<br /


Bloom's Taxonomy - Revised

Posted February 16 2011 8:17 p.m.

Here's an interesting and practical http://www.celt.iastate.edu/teaching/RevisedBlooms1.html">revision of the well-known Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives from Iowa State University http://www.celt.iastate.edu/">Centre for Excellence in Learning & Teaching. This version combines the knowledge (factual, conceptual, procedural, metacognitive) and cognitive proc


Digital Natives: Where is the Evidence?

Posted February 9 2011 10:52 p.m.

In http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals/carfax/01411926.html">Digital Natives: Where is the Evidence?,  Ellen Helsper and Rebecca Eynon try to untangle what it means to be a "digital native" and, more specifically, whether this is determined by age, experience using the Internet and breadth of use of the Internet. They define a digital native as someone who multitasks, has acce


Educational Technology Showcase

Posted January 27 2011 6:08 p.m.

On January 5th the BCIT School of Health and the Learning & Teaching Centre put on an educational technology showcase to demonstrate the teaching innovation that is happening in the school. If you missed it, here's a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ohU02Sct1w">short video that nicely captures the energy of the event and provides an excellent sample of some of the innovative used o


Alone Together

Posted January 26 2011 11:45 p.m.

 "We make our technologies, and they, in turn, shape us. So, of every technology we must ask, Does it serve our human purposes? - a question that causes us to reconsider what these purposes are. Technologies in every generation, present opportunities to reflect on our values and direction." - Sherry Turkle, Alone Together, p. 19

Amidst all the buzz and hype surrou


Presentation to IT Silgo - Ireland

Posted January 20 2011 6:24 p.m.

My presentation to the Institute of Technology in Silgo, Ireland is available here:
http://connect.itsligo.ie/p60971569/">Separating Fact from Fiction in the Digital Generation Discourse.

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Learning through Situated Simulations: Exploring Mobile Augmented Reality

Posted January 18 2011 10:03 p.m.

 http://net.educause.edu/ir/library/pdf/ECAR_SO/ERB/ERB1101.pdf">Here's a research bulletin from the  EDUCAUSE Center for Applied Research on learning through situated simulations.

"This ECAR research bulletin illustrates and reports on a series of experiments with situated simulations that have been tested with students in real environments in Norway, Athens,


Separating Fact from Fiction in the Digital Generation Discourse

Posted January 14 2011 7:13 p.m.

I will be making an online presentation on our digital learners research to http://itsligo.ie/">Institute of Technology Silgo, in Ireland on January 19 at 4:10 pm GMT (8:10 am PST). You can find out more about the presentation and how to register at:
href="http://sligolearning.blogspot.com/2011/01/separating-fact-from-fiction-in-digital.html">Separating Fact from Fiction in th


Student Guide to Learning with Ed Tech

Posted January 11 2011 7:38 p.m.

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Found in http://www.bcit.ca/library/databases/b">BCIT Library's suscription to Books24x7, <a href


iPad use and adoption in schools

Posted January 6 2011 12:06 a.m.

New York Times article has examples of which apps are being used, controversy over whether school funds allocated for iPad purchases are being spent wisely, etc.:
"Dr. Curtis recently used a $1.99 application, ColorSplash, which removes or adds color to pictures, to demonstrate the importance of color in a Caravaggio painting in his seminar on Baroque art. “Traditionally, so much of art histo


Digital Learners in Higher Education: Generation is Not the Issue

Posted December 23 2010 6:30 p.m.

The idea that generation explains how young people use digital technologies and that these "digital natives" are fundamentally different from the older "digital natives" in how they use and understand technology has been successfully debunked. http://digitallearners.ca/">Our work and in particular, the article, href="http://www.box.net/shared/0m8ytxqrfm">Digital Learners in High


Learning, the Net Generation and Digital Natives

Posted December 20 2010 7:52 p.m.

The journal,href="http://www.informaworld.com.ezproxy.library.ubc.ca/smpp/title%7Edb=all%7Econtent=g931228219%7Etab=toc"> Learning, Media and Technology has just published an issue with  focus on the theme, Learning, the Net Generation and Digital Natives. I have only had chance to scan the articles but it looks like a very interesting issue that adds to the growing body of rese


The Digital Future of Higher Education

Posted October 30 2010 12:14 a.m.

The evidence is clear: when it comes to the use of digital technologies in higher education, generation is not the issue. Portraying technology use in generational terms is simplistic and potentially costly. This is the conclusion of http://digitallearners.ca/">our research and of many other studies. But that doesn't mean our work is done. We still need to gain a fuller and deeper und


Special Issue of Journal of Computer Assisted Learning

Posted October 26 2010 1:36 p.m.

The Journal of Computer Assisted Learning has published a href="http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/jca.2010.26.issue-5/issuetoc">special issue on the Net Generation. It contains four excellent articles that move beyond simplistic notions of generation and provide a more nuanced and theoretically-grounded understanding of digital technology use. Unfortunately JCAL is not an open acce


Visitors and Residents

Posted October 23 2010 3:34 p.m.

One of the problems with The Net Gen discourse is that assumes that all people in this age group (which is not consistently defined) have the same set of characteristics, skills and aptitudes, particularly with respect to digital technologies. This simplistic, generationally and technologically deterministic perspective hides much more important differences in how people use and understand technol


Generational Explanation is a Gross Oversimplification

Posted September 21 2010 10:55 p.m.

There is a growing body of solid research-based evidence that contradicts the popular view of the digital native as part of a technologically-savvy generation that differs fundamentally from previous generations. The latest evidence comes from a special issue of the Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, Desribing or Debunking: The Net Generation and Digital Natives. The four articles in the speci


The Net Gen Skeptic Message and the Media

Posted September 15 2010 10:09 p.m.

It has taken over two years but it finally feels like our message is getting through and that educators are starting to seriously question the prevailing myth about the uniqueness of the net generation and all that supposedly implies. I have been encouraged by the frequent requests to speak on this issue from all over the world. Perhaps it's only because the organizers can't afford the high fees o


Multitasking Lowers Academic Performance

Posted September 7 2010 8:04 p.m.

It says something about how firmly entrenched the net generation myth has become that we need to conduct a study to show that being distracted and unfocused has a negative impact on academic performance.

One of the claims made by the net generation myth creators is that young people can multitask efficiently. They can do this, apparently, because they have grown up with digital technolo