Describing or debunking? The net generation and digital natives

Jones, C. and Czerniewicz, L. (2010). Describing or debunking? The net generation and digital natives. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 26(5) pp. 317–320.



The idea that there has been a sharp and fundamental break between young people and previous generations has become commonplace. It can be found widely in policy statements and in commercial rhetoric, it is referenced repeatedly in academic work and it persists despite a growing body of evidence that questions the foundations of the idea (Kennedy et al. 2008; Selwyn 2008; Bullen et al. 2009; Czerniewicz et al. 2009; Pedró 2009; Hargittai 2010; Jones et al. 2010). This special edition brings together academic commentary from three continents and includes one national context that stands outside the standard assumptions that are current in advanced industrial societies. The authors question the idea that there has been a clear and identifiable generational break, a 'singularity' to use Marc Prensky's dramatic term (Prensky 2001a, p. 1).

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