Digital age in University

Are you lazy to bring notes and books to University? I could have agreed this but I will still prefer to bring notes and books. It is not because I don’t like the education is going with the concept of virtual class, but what I am concerning is about the truly learning from lecturers. No doubt, Internet is giving different kind of information and data that is openly available for student to refer. For example, when typing out any keyword on the Google search engine, the first link will be Wikipedia which is rich in information about the particular keyword. Besides the information provided by Wiki, it has also provided online dictionary which is known as Wiktionary. Basically, Internet is not only goes with wiki-based data but also student could go with others “link” in website to do their virtual study. Hence, student can get their info instantly with these but meanwhile they need to be careful on getting bad information. Eventually, it will make you start asking yourself whether is there quality of education on online sources.

Indeed, I agree that student engages practice with digital age is good but somehow ‘it is fair to say that the Internet provided the infrastructure that has enabled instant global economic collapse. No other means of human communication has ever had the capability to travel so far so quickly to such devastating effect.’ (Miller 2010) It is true that e-learning could have cut down the cost of the student on buying books or journals, and it would have really meant to replace them apparently. However, some journals are needed to be subscribed and usually it is costly in around RM 100++. It is due to the ‘journals acquire articles from authors, bundle them into an issue, and distribute them to subscribing readers. Each article costs the journal to process, including the costs of refereeing, copy editing, typesetting, etc.’ (McCabe & Snyder 2006)  

Therefore, in order to get these good journals, it would just make some students need to pay for it to get better information. Conversely, some poor student would have just gone for other journals or website documents that are openly available for public. Once again, if the virtual courses are required them to just only find good journal for their studies, are these will be a great supplement to their education? Will this fair to all the students?

‘The Internet and other technologies honor multiple forms of intelligence—be they abstract, textual, visual, musical, social, or kinesthetic—and therein present tremendous opportunities to design new learning environments that enhance the natural ways that humans learn.’

(Brown n.d.)           
According to Brown’s quote, it is true that students should have try to adapt the new learning environment in University with the recent technology. I could not say Internet is totally not advisable to University but it is need to depend on what ways of Internet communication that can help them to engage in their learning experience. For example, UOW has a particular e-learning site which enable lecturer to upload notes and download by the students. It is a good practice for the student to get used to use it to download the notes. In contrast, if it is having virtual class that every student will be just attend the “class” at home, how are they going to learn about the real-world problems and the socialization? They can be just discussing with friends, lecturer through social network and most of the information that they get will be just from Internet. Once again, I am  strongly agree with Miller (2010), he stated that ‘how do we create a classroom where students are asked to sit with real-world problems, to engage with multiple variables simultaneously, to plunge into the bottomless sea of information that has been unleashed by the World Wide Web?’ To conclude, university is not wrong to practice the digital age but it is depend on how they locate the new learning environment instead of having the student to attend a virtual class.



Credit: Students, Goldsmiths, University of London

Can you forget the book?                       


Brown, JS n.d., ‘Learning in the Digial Age’, viewed 24 April 2013,

Miller, RE 2010, ‘The coming apocalypse’, Pedagogy, vol 10, no. 1, pp. 143-151, viewed 24 April 2013, UOW database

McCabe, M & Snyder, CM 2006, ‘Acedemic Journal Prices in a Digital Age: A two-sided-market model’, pp. 1-45, viewed 24 April 2013,