Social Computing Environments, Digital Natives and Instructional Technology: Promises of Equality and Practices of Exclusion

By Alan Foley and Rick Voithofer.

Published by The Technology Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper examines the discursive confluence of social computing environments, Digital Natives and the practices of instructional technology delineating how these discourses can potentially create exclusion in the implementation and instructional use of these technologies. Educators are adopting social networking ideas and technologies in order to create educational opportunities for students. These trends are based on the assumption that creating knowledge using these technologies is more democratic compared to experiences in traditional classrooms where unequal power relations may be more oppressive and where content comes from monolithic and static sources like textbooks. Subject positions are created for students on social networking sites that offer the appearance of equal participation but actually contain their own social hierarchies and oppressions.

Keywords: Technology, Disability, Students, Web 2.0, Social Network, Digital Native, Social Computing, Learning

The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, Volume 5, Issue 2, pp.85-102. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.717MB).

Alan Foley

Associate Professor, Instructional Design, Development and Evaluation, School of Education, Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY, USA

Alan Foley is an Associate Professor of Instructional Design, Development and Evaluation at Syracuse University. His research interests lie at the intersection of user experience, disability, identity, and e-Learning technologies. He is currently working on projects to improve the accessibility and usability in educational technologies and is interested in the development of learning environments that ensure access for all learners. His teaching areas include instructional and learning space design, assistive technologies, multimedia, and web accessibility/usability. Dr. Foley received his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin Madison in Educational Communications Technology.

Rick Voithofer

Associate Professor, Cultural Foundations, Technology, Qualitative Inquiry, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA

Rick Voithofer is an associate professor in the Educational Technology program at Ohio State University in the School of Educational Policy and Leadership. His current research interests include looking at the intersections of equity, educational technology, and new/multi-literacies in urban schools. Some of his other research interests include the digital divide and online teaching in K12 environments. He teaches courses in technology integration for working and pre- service teachers, educational media production courses in video and multimedia, in addition to classes in visual culture and curriculum theory and instructional design. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin Madison in Educational Communications Technology.

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