#LTHEchat 243: Self exclusion – through digital inequalities. Led by Christina Elliott @Dr_CL_Elliott with @scottturneruon and @gamergazz. Wed. 12th October 8pm UK.

Image by Ohmydearlife from Pixabay

In many respects this tweetchat follows on from the fantastic discussion #LTHEchat 238: Digital Inequality led by Puiyin Wong @Puiyin, 15th June 2022. During this discussion we discovered that the three of us had made the same worrying observation during the pandemic. When we had to go online quickly one of the reasons we found students were sometimes not engaging was due to equipment at home; but there appeared to be unwillingness to admit to this. Post-pandemic, we still see some students choosing to self-exclude from technology enhanced learning activities rather than declare digital inequality issues. After some discussion we realised that we didn’t know the answer (or even a partial solution) to addressing this and therefore we are interested in insights from the community. Is this a pattern seen elsewhere? What can we do?

During this week’s tweetchat we will try and explore why this behaviour arises. Is it driven by the assumption that all students have access to the equipment and workspace both on campus and at home (and is this assumption correct)? Why might students choose not to be open about their challenges caused by digital inequalities (e.g. doing everything on a phone or poor wifi) and how this may lead to self-exclusion from their learning? Is this going to get worse in the short-term due to the cost of living crisis and in the longer term due to new technology such as Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) being used in learning?

How do we avoid increasing the digital divide between those who can buy kits for home and those that can’t? What can we do to mitigate this? Do these technology based approaches throw up accessibility issues, not just digital inequality?

Finally, is there anything that can be learned from previous leaps in technologies introduced into teaching pedagogy, for example the introduction and use of the internet, VLEs and associated software applications?

Guest biographies:

Being a life-long avid fan of video games, I have found a natural home at Newcastle University developing game-based learning strategies to enhance learning and teaching in STEM education and how this can intersect with the application of digital technologies to enhance and scale-up these approaches.

After a period of working in industry, he was awarded a MSc in Marketing with Distinction at Kent University. Gareth has worked in the education sector, both FE and HE, for over 15 years, as well as working self employed in digital marketing, and IT support for small local businesses. Now works at Canterbury Christ Church University.


Main focus has been on developing student’s problem-solving and programming skills, and it has spun off into engagement with schools and many other things I have been fortunate to be involved in. Now work at Canterbury Christ Church University.


QR code to Wakelet recording of this chat


About teresamac

Experienced language educator and innovator, now retired. Taught and managed language teaching (French and Spanish) for 35 years, researching voice over the internet and telecollaboration (virtual exchange) in language teaching, informal learning, assessment and learning theories.
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