Background

Computer access and training are now deemed necessary for young people to become active and productive members of society, and both educators and parents today are investing heavily in time and money to provide this access and training. But is the investment paying dividends?

The documentary supports Looker and Thiessen’s finding that it is premature to conclude that ICT use improves young people’s educational performance. There are immense differences in access and use of computer technology in schools, both between countries and between population groups within countries, and that schools implement ICT into their curriculum in different ways. In some schools, use of ICT appears to be associated with better learning outcomes, while in others it does not. The researchers also found that educational performance is highest among students who use ICT in moderation; students who seldom or never use ICT, as well as those who use ICT very frequently, exhibit poorer academic outcomes.

The research and the documentary were supported in Canada by Dalhousie University and Mount Saint Vincent University, and in South Africa by Stellenbosch University, and was funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

Filming took place in schools that were interested in participating; they were not chosen for any other reason.

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