Digital literacies in higher education: exploring textual and technological practice

Lea, Mary R. and Jones, Sylvia (2011). Digital literacies in higher education: exploring textual and technological practice. Studies in Higher Education, 36(4) pp. 377–393.



Concerns are frequently raised about undergraduates being so immersed in web-based technologies in their broader lives that they have difficulties engaging in more conventional study practices, such as academic reading and writing essays. The research reported on here examines this issue through a literacies lens.The project findings illustrate the complex interrelationship between literacies and technologies with the potential to disrupt traditional academic literacy practices. However, they also offer strong evidence for students’ ongoing reliance on the authority of the institution when it comes to accessing and utilizing web-based resources for their assignments. The authors suggest that in order to understand the changes that are taking place for learners in today’s higher education more attention needs to be paid to textual practice around learning and less upon the technologies and their applications.

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  • Item ORO ID
  • 21165
  • Item Type
  • Journal Item
  • ISSN
  • 0307-5079
  • Keywords
  • literacies; technologies; reading practices; texts; institutional context
  • Academic Unit or School
  • Institute of Educational Technology (IET)
  • Copyright Holders
  • © 2010 Society for Research into Higher Education
  • Depositing User
  • Colin Smith