Move over digital natives and immigrants, here come Visitors and Residents


What are the implications for learning and teaching when we move from perceiving the web as a collection of tools to thinking of it as a series of overlapping spaces? This was the focus of a recent Higher Education Academy event on flexible learning and online residency. The term residencycomes from the Visitors and Residents continuum (V&R) which I proposed as an alternative to Marc Prensky’s digital natives and immigrants idea.
V&R is a simple metaphor for online engagement: some people visit the web while others live out a portion of their lives online and are, in effect, resident in online spaces. Unlike Prensky’s idea, the V&R continuum does not assume there are links between age and technical skill, but instead focuses on motivations to engage. We are currently using the V&R continuum as the underpinning principle in a longitudinal JISC-funded project which, in partnership with OCLC, is exploring what motivates learners, teaching practitioners and researchers to engage with the web. We are particularly interested in learner-owned literacies – approaches to information seeking and collaboration online which individuals evolve outside of an institutional context.
David White is a researcher and co-manages Technology-Assisted Lifelong Learning (TALL), a learning and technology R&D group in theUniversity of Oxford. He tweets at @daveowhite.
Full Text: Using the web for learning and teaching – a new understanding | Higher Education Network | Guardian Professional.

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