Over the past decade, the rapid expansion of digital technologies, the development of the Internet, and the capabilities offered by Web.2.0 for social networking and building knowledge communities, has also raised the question of the uneven access to and participation in the digital revolution, and of a digital gap or digital divide, leading to new kinds of learning divides.
Digital technologies present schools with new challenges. One is how teachers might incorporate new technologies into their teaching in ways that enhance opportunities and capabilities to learn. This requires new radical ways of thinking that go beyond simply adding hardware to existing schooling structures. The second is how to bridge the digital gap which has begun to open up between different social groups; rich and poor; those social groups with cultural social and economic capital, and those without; those in rural communities with limited access to bandwidth compared to those in the cities; between communities whose mother tongue is not the same as the digital community, and so on.
The debate has since extended to how far digital technologies might contribute to the democratisation of education.
Can the mastery of ICT applications enable previously discouraged learners to reengage in learning?
How might digital technologies be used in ways that overcome digital and learning divides?
What examples are there of digital technologies being used to offer a new range of learning situations outside the classroom, including new possibilities for training?