The Digital Divide

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Nearly every week, I get to set foot on a new campus with the mission to spread the word about how Thinkwell can help teachers and students. Above all, one thing consistently strikes me:

The digital divide ain't what you think.

The digital divide that frustrates students the most is not the one between rich and poor or the one between ethnic groups. Unfortunately, differences do exist between these groups. But as used computers rival the cost of a tank of gas, these differences are shrinking. The digital divide that is far more frustrating for students is the one that exists between them and their instructors.

There currently exists a condition in which many instructors come from a generation that has learned to navigate the world without a heavy reliance on electronic devices. This generation of instructors is slowly retiring, but the frustration remains. Students believe they are being short-changed when an instructor is not tech-friendly.

Years ago, teenagers across America knew that record labels were doomed, long before the CEOs found out. Students will always be attracted to things that work better for them, and a lot of instructors will be left behind. I believe this core issue is hiding behind terms like "student success," "retention," and "student satisfaction." These are concerns that students will eventually solve for themselves, one way or another.

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Right on!!!! But some of us old instructors do get it too. Keep marching to that tune, Mark.

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This page contains a single entry by Mark Schnug, VP of Sales & Marketing published on March 12, 2009 6:16 PM.

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