Information and Communication Technologies in Education

Volume 58 of the series IFIP — The International Federation for Information Processing pp 113-128

New literacies for connected learning in global classrooms

  • Toni DownesAffiliated withUniversity of Western Sydney
  • , Katina ZammitAffiliated withUniversity of Western Sydney


While much is being researched and written about the nature of new learning environments and the changing roles for teachers in the school of the future little serious attention is being paid to the new demands being placed upon students in secondary schools as they communicate, handle information and learn in global networked classrooms. In secondary schools, teachers expect to build on students’ existing literacy skills and understandings. These skills and understandings are essentially built around the paper-based technologies of pen, paper, books and libraries. Learning processes in networked learning environments require substantially different literacies. The key differences relate to the changing nature of texts with which students will need to work. This paper will discuss the implications for secondary curricula and pedagogy of the challenges presented by the literacy demands these “new texts” place on secondary school students in networked learning environments. In particular it will argue for a redefinition of basic literacies and learning processes taught and used in secondary classrooms.


Literacies Secondary learning environments networked classrooms