Critically Evaluating Prensky in a Language Learning Context: The "Digital Natives/Immigrants Debate" and its Implications for CALL

Silvia Benini, Liam Murray
2013 20 Years of EUROCALL: Learning from the Past, Looking to the Future   unpublished
digital natives" in Prensky's (2001a Prensky's ( , 2001b two seminal articles. Prensky argues that students today, having grown up in the Digital Age, learn differently from their predecessors, or "digital immigrants". As such, the pedagogical tools and methods used to educate the Natives are outdated. Consequently, many educational professionals became convinced that the ways in which today's students think and learn have been qualitatively changed by their use of information and communication
more » ... technology (ICT). Indeed, the analogy introduced by Prensky is very appealing, neither facts nor evidence tested in everyday practice have been provided. This paper aims to critically examine the underlying "digital native" theory by reviewing some recent studies questioning the existence of digital natives and presenting some of the students and their approach and use of new technologies for language learning. By monitoring and interviewing the students and their teachers, it is intended to provide language learning during and outside the class, the analysis of students' skills (as putative digital natives) within language learning, and the attitude of teachers and tutors toward technologies. Overall, it is intended to examine if the current evidence resulting from this study validates Prensky's digital native theory.
doi:10.14705/rpnet.2013.000134 fatcat:bvkqmql54ndoheydundzutgdlu