Kansas State University
[…] The first concept Prensky describes is that of the Digital Native . The current generation of college students is the first to grow up immersed in technology. They have always had the Internet, laptops, cell phones with text messaging, AIM ,Facebook™ or MySpace™ , PlayStations™, digital cameras, DVD players, blogs, and any other number of digital technologies that allow them to instantly capture or communicate with their world. They use these tools as extensions of their bodies and minds, fluidly incorporating them into their daily routines (Prensky, 2005). They have learned the language of technology as they communicate instantly with their peers. These students, like all Natives, adapt quickly to changes in their environment and look for new ways to incorporate the latest technology into their fast-paced lives.
On the other hand is the Digital Immigrant . The Digital Immigrant is the latecomer in the technology revolution and as with any immigrant, there is a certain “accent” that is readily apparent to the native speakers. Examples of this “accent” are things like calling and asking someone if a recipient received the email that was just sent, typing out text messages with full words rather than the standard abbreviations ( OMG ur my bff!), or going to the library before searching the Internet. Digital Immigrants still try and work around or second guess technology, while the Digital Natives know no other way. It is important to understand the differences between ourselves as the Immigrants and our students as the Natives. When we teach and advise our students using a language different than our own, we should not wonder that they aren’t listening! […]