Feeds

OU: Digital divide now between clued and clueless

Calls for learning in the workplace

Build a business case: developing custom apps

The vice chancellor of the Open University has said the digital divide is now between people who do and do not understand how to exploit IT fully.

In an opening speech to the Jisc conference in London on 12 April 2010, Martin Bean said that the digital divide was no longer about haves and have-nots in terms of access to IT and ownership of devices.

"In my mind now the digital divide is much more about those that actually understand how to use and apply technology in their lives and their work as a necessity, rather than simply getting access to the technology per se," he said.

According to Bean the issue leads directly into the need to educate people for new types of work. He told delegates that learning in the workplace needs to become integral.

"The only way we dig our way out of this economic crisis and recession ... is if we recognise that we have got to embed learning for life in the workplace," he said.

Bean argued that distance education is growing and universities and colleges face a challenge to find alternative models of delivery. He said higher education institutions need to look at learning not as a once in a lifetime opportunity, but as a lifelong experience.

Another major challenge is being able to transform information into meaningful knowledge, Bean said.

"The day that Google became a verb, and teachers in primary and secondary schools starting looking at Wikipedia as a trusted source of information, we should all have started to think deeply about the notion of how we longer teach people of all ages where to find information and talked instead about how to make sense of that information," said the vice chancellor.

He predicted that trust in content will be one of the big issues in the future.

"Our libraries collectively ... need to be spending as much time thinking about sense making of information as they do about simple retrieval of information," he told the audience of university and college delegates.

This article was originally published at Kable.

Kable's GC weekly is a free email newsletter covering the latest news and analysis of public sector technology. To register click here.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Boffins attempt to prove the UNIVERSE IS JUST A HOLOGRAM
Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy?
Our LOHAN spaceplane ballocket Kickstarter climbs through £8000
Through 25 per cent but more is needed: Get your UNIQUE rewards!
China building SUPERSONIC SUBMARINE that travels in a BUBBLE
Shanghai to San Fran in two hours would be a trick, though
LOHAN tunes into ultra long range radio
And verily, Vultures shall speak status unto distant receivers
SpaceX prototype rocket EXPLODES over Texas. 'Tricky' biz, says Elon Musk
No injuries or near injuries. Flight stayed in designated area
Galileo, Galileo! Galileo, Galileo! Galileo fit to go. Magnifico
I'm just a poor boy, nobody loves me. But at least I can find my way with ESA GPS by 2017
EOS, Lockheed to track space junk from Oz
WA facility gets laser-eyes out of the fog
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.