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The Digital Divide in the Age of Covid-19

by Professor Mfon Akpan

Category: Book, Memoir

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We live in the age of technology. This is a time of great advancement and connection: as the world becomes even smaller and markets become increasingly global, opportunity grows for those who may not have entered into their market through the Internet. This is also a period of elite division: as tech research advances and more people gain access to new technologies, a rift emerges. Those who have access to the most current technology have a great advantage over those who do not. This book aims to shed light on this divide as it affects education. In a recent TEDx talk, I discussed the digital divide and how this gap creates a gulch of preparedness in students. The main emphasis of this book is to raise awareness of this divide. If you’re existing on one side of the rift, you may not realize that there are others on a polar opposite side, or how they are being impacted.

This book addresses not only the digital divide, but also some solutions and processes that can increase students’ beneficial exposure to technology in the classroom. I write this text with college professors in mind. Educators from K through 12, corporate trainers, and others can also find this text beneficial. However, I’m particularly trying to reach college professors in an urban setting. I wish to address professors that focus on nontraditional students and are directly dealing with the challenges of the digital divide.

This book is also being written during the Covid-19 global pandemic. During this time, we are witnessing an enormous shift from working in the office and studying in the classroom to both working and studying remotely. The digital divide becomes even more relevant during this crisis; students who don’t have reliable internet access cannot view lectures, join group meetings, among other limitations. The goal is to bring the digital divide to light and offer solutions to mitigate the disparity between students in different circumstances.

Mfon’s TEDx on the Digital Divide