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27

Web 2.0 technologies when utilized in the classroom also change the dynamic

between teacher and student. While students seem to have readily adjusted to advances

in technology through Web 2.0, educators may not be adjusting accordingly. Levin et al.

  • (2002)

    , while surveying 3,000 public school students, recognized a "digital disconnect"

    • (p.

      v) between students and their teachers, with students reporting that their teachers had

not yet adjusted their teaching to respond to the new methods in which students

communicate and use the Web beyond the classroom. The classroom environment and

students have changed and as a result the role of the teacher has changed as well.

Lee

(2008) recognizes the role of teachers as facilitators in learning environments which

integrate technology. No longer is the teacher the sole knowledge source. Web 2.0

technologies make ―knowledge decentralized, accessible and co-constructed by and

among a broad base of user‖ (Greenhow et al., 2009, p. 247). While the constructivist

classroom may have collaborative benefits based on the Web 2.0 tools used, Ullrich et al.

(2008) and Angeli (2008) offer important considerations before making the transition to

an entirely Web 2.0 class. Based on the analysis from a study done on micro-blogging,

Ullrich found that although students encouraged one another to participate,

  • unconstrained active participation results in distractions‖. The researchers suggest that,

although Web 2.0 technologies are successful at ―stimulating participation‖, the teacher

must still maintain an active role as the discourse mediator (Ullrich et al. 2008, p. 712).

As validated by the micro-blogging study, active participation and collaboration can have

negative educational effects when teachers do not maintain their roles as discourse

mediators.

The technologies require

educators

to

be diligent

reflective practitioners.

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