Today’s students are digital natives. Some have argued that the very concept of a ‘digital native’ is classist, since not all children have regular and broad access to technology, or can be assumed to gain technical facility effortlessly, via high-tech cultural osmosis. Others make a case for the ubiquity of interactive and social media, and how these are inevitably, inexorably changing our learners, ourselves.
by Sarah Cunnane / Times Higher Education / 15 December 2011
Students currently going through the higher education system are part of a “net generation” who expect instant feedback because of their heavy reliance on mobile phones, social media and video games, a conference has heard.
Arlene J. Nicholas, an assistant professor in the department of business studies and economics at Salve Regina University in New England, spoke at the Society for Research into Higher Education conference, held in Wales last week, giving findings from her research on learning methods among 100 students at a small private university.
She told delegates that the current generation of US students – defined as those born between 1981 and 2000 – were the most diverse, with a third defined as non-white or Latino. But they are also the most demanding, Dr Nicholas claimed. “This multimedia generation seems to expect multiple methods to learn,” she said.
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