Exploring the Digital Divide: The Use of Digital Technologies in Ontario Public Schools

Bodong Chen

Abstract


Combining data from a school principal survey with student demographics and achievement data, the present study aimed to develop a much needed understanding of ICT usage in Ontario’s K-12 public schools. Results indicated equitable first-order access to technology for schools, early integration of ICT from the earliest grades, frequent application of ICT in teaching, and an enabling effect of ICT on additional access to learning resources and distance learning. However, challenges were also uncovered in building technology infrastructure for a small fraction of schools; ensuring home access for schools with lower family incomes, smaller size or from remote regions; and providing teachers with professional development for choosing online materials and adopting emerging ICT-enabled teaching practice. Furthermore, this study highlighted the importance of parent involvement in ICT usage and the potential beneficial linkage between ICT usage and student learning achievement.

Keywords


digital divide; learning technologies; technology integration; digital literacy; Canada

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21432/T2KP6F

Copyright (c) 2015 Bodong Chen

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.