A new study has been released by the CIBER center, a think-tank with the University College of London, which suggests that the “Google generation” does not know how to search the web. Defined as anyone born after 1993 and therefore having little to no knowledge of a world without Internet, the Google generation seems to lack the critical and analytical skills needed to perform research. The increased access to technology has not kept pace with increased teaching of how to challenge information find on the web, nor with effective teaching of how to best use search engines. It seems that even though young people may know how to speak the language of the Internet, that doesn’t mean they really understand it.
The study is important because it asserts the need for and importance of media literacy. It tells us that information is absorbed but not necessarily processed–clearly problematic since the ability to gather and use data and research is a key component of the learning process.
If you haven’t done so already, please sign up your child for one of our media literacy classes (see ‘Programs’ at the top of the page). Also, be sure to check out our workshop called On the Web, which is targeted to adults who want to learn more about the Internet. Media literacy is important for the younger generation, but it’s also important for the adults who raise them.
Click here for an article about the study.