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The Myth of the “Digital Native”: Why Generational Stereotyping Won't Improve Student Learning

By: Fred Mindlin
Date: October 22, 2010

Summary: Fred Mindlin of the Central California Writing Project challenges the idea that those who grow up with the Internet are "internet experts at birth." He says educators' responsibility is to teach students to reflect on the implications of their digital worlds.


Excerpt from Article

My experience working with students K-12 is that most have a limited understanding of the internet's power and potential and lack the critical and analytical skills to harness it for their own uses. In terms of the internet, I am the native, present since it was browsed with the original Netscape dragon.

Copyright © 2010 by the California Educational Technology Professionals Association. Posted with permission. Mindlin, Fred. 2010, January. "The Myth of the 'Digital Native': Why generational stereotyping won't improve student learning." DataBus 2010 (1): 12-13.

About the Author Fred Mindlin is associate director for technology integration with the Central California Writing Project (CCWP). Visit

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