UCB Reducing the Digital Divide in Education Question
downlaod if from previous paper and add 5 pages more on it
Introduction to the Digital Age
Final Paper Instructions
INSTRUCTIONS FOR FINAL PAPER
FINAL PAPER: This 10-16 page research brief will enable you to pursue a specific topic related to
the digital age in which you have personal interest. It may be some aspect we have studied in class
or one we have not studied. Your assignment is to write research brief on the topic. This
assignment is worth 80 points.
A research brief summarizes the state of the current research on a given topic and also provides
some recommendations about what actions might be beneficial for your target audience. You can
choose your target audience for this paper – it might be your current employer in which case you
would summarize the topic and make specific recommendations to improve practices or if your
topic does not apply, you can think about writing for the public and making recommendations that
are beneficial for society.
Introduction: Your paper should begin with a short introduction that explains why the topic you
have chosen is important and interesting and forecasts the main argument of the paper. Your
introduction should also provide a clear roadmap of what you will present in your paper.
Literature Review: The main body of your paper should be organized conceptually using APA
heading styles. Include at least three sections with three or four studies in each section. Each
section should have a key point, argument, or finding that is supported by the studies you choose.
Refer back to your final paper outline to keep your ideas organized. Make sure each section has a
brief introduction and conclusion that summarizes the main findings in that section.
For each study that you include, say a few words about how the study was conducted and then give
the results of the study. Be sure to link the main finding to the key point of that section. Make sure
you use transitions between studies to show how they relate to each other.
Analysis/Recommendations: The final section of your paper should be a summary and analysis of
the state of the literature. What do we know about your topic based on the literature taken as a
whole? This summary is the main argument of your paper. It is a statement about what we know
based on the literature. Review the main points in a few paragraphs. You may also want to consider
pointing out any shortcomings of the studies. Following this review, you should a few paragraphs
about the implications of the research and findings for communication practitioners working in this
topic area. Based on what we know, what would you recommend as action steps that
communication practitioners can use to improve the situation? What would you say to someone
who is working in this area? (Note: This section is worth the most points in the final paper.)
Conclusion: Include a conclusion paragraph where you restate the main points of your paper.
Make sure your paper makes a clear argument, and that you forecast that argument in the
introduction and restate it in the conclusion. Remember to cite all claims using APA format.
Attach a cover sheet and abstract. The abstract should summarize the main argument. See the
documents for guidelines on how to write a final paper and the final paper rubric to learn how you
will be graded on your assignment.
The writing style for this assignment should be less technical and academic and more general. Think
about your target audience. The key skill you should have from this is being able to apply empirical
Introduction to the Digital Age
Final Paper Instructions
research findings to a situation or problem you might encounter at work. You must learn how to
translate these findings into language that is understandable for your target audience, which may
very well be others who are not well versed in research.
Your assignment should include:
• APA style title page
• Main text
• Reference list
Introduction to the Digital Age
Final Paper Grading Rubric
Final Paper Rubric
Introduction clearly explains topic importance. The
case for the research is compelling with cited
evidence to back up all claims. Key terms central to
the research are defined with one clear
definition. A roadmap for what the reader can
expect is provided.
The literature review begins with a clear
introductory paragraph that previews/summarizes
what is in the literature review.
The literature review is organized conceptually into
3 or 4 sections with 3 or 4 studies in each section.
Each section makes a specific, directional claim
Every study in every section supports the claim for
that section. Sections are cohesive and all come
together towards a main point
Each study is explained succinctly. Critical
information about the method of study is included
to help the reader evaluate the evidence, along with
the finding(s) that are most pertinent to the overall
claim being made in the section.
Analysis and Recommendations: The literature
review ends with a section that summarizes the
entire literature review and provides an analysis of
the literature that draws together main themes.
What are the implications of the main findings on
communication practice? What specific
recommendations would you make for practitioners
based upon the conclusions drawn from the
There are smooth transitions between individual
studies and the paper develops a narrative that is
The entire paper is well written (clear, concise,
minimal use of passive voice, free of typos,
misspellings, syntax and other grammatical errors).
The entire paper conforms to proper APA format.
Sample Section of Final Paper Rubric
Name ______Hao Wu______________
Criteria for Grading (Overall quality
and coherence of the paper will affect the
number of points earned in each category)
Introduction clearly explains topic
importance. The case for the research is
compelling with cited evidence to back up
all claims. Key terms central to the
research are defined with one clear
definition. A roadmap for what the
reader can expect is provided.
The literature review section uses at least
3 texts, and accurately and succinctly
summarizes the important points of each.
Each study is explained succinctly. Critical
information about the method of study is
included to help the reader evaluate the
evidence, along with the finding(s) that
are most pertinent to the overall claim
being made in the section. Overall, the
section demonstrates the student’s
understanding & command of the articles.
The analysis section provides insight,
observations, & conclusions about the
readings as a whole, but doesn’t continue
to summarize them. Provides a thoughtful
discussion of the implications of the
research findings for communication
practice and practitioners, and offers
specific recommendations for
practitioners. The student supports his or
her statements with reasoning and
evidence drawn from the readings.
Paper correctly uses APA style.
Writing is free of errors in grammar and
syntax, is concise, and can be readily
understood by readers without their
having to re-read.
Comments; This looks great – keep on in this trajectory for the final paper. I can see a lot of
improvement in the syntax and grammar, as well as following the assignment instructions.
Reducing the Digital Divide in Education
Reducing the Digital Divide in Education
There is an ongoing global debate concerning the issue of digital divide in education.
This topic is critical not only to researchers but also policy makers to understand how the digital
divide in education is affecting students and come up with effective strategies on reducing its
impact. “Digital Divide” can be defined as the separation between those who can use or have
access to technology and those who do not. Excellence in education cannot be achieved without
quality education. All students need enough access to support services and instructional
resources to achieve academically. This specifically applies to the area of instructional
technology. Due to insufficient or no internet access and computers facilities some students are
lagging in terms of academic achievements (Frolova, Rogach & Ryabova, 2020). This is because
they are missing instant links to communication and information. Besides lack of access to
technology, makes some students miss out on employment opportunities that need high or
moderate amounts of technological knowledge. The digital divide in education has significantly
affected many students especially those from low-income households and underserved districts.
In the late 1990s, many rural schools were not able to use the World Wide Web. Many state
legislatures, especially in the West, made it a priority to hook up remote public schools to the
Internet (Hill & Lawton, 2018). Thus, there is a need for effective strategies to help combat the
digital gap in the system of education.
The challenge of the digital divide in the system of education is not just technology and
equity but much beyond. It is a divide of accessibility wherein people in certain areas just do not
have access to such infrastructure and a divide connected to usability wherein there is a lack of
knowledge to use such systems and processes. According to Ye & Yang (2020) considering the
contemporary scenario of the COVID-19 pandemic, the lockdowns in all parts of the world have
made people stay within the confines of their own homes. Accessibility to the internet has
enabled students to access school information, lectures, notes, and other important things.
However, there are those students who do not have access to the internet who have been directly
impacted (Macevičiūtė & Wilson, 2018). There is a need for the implementation of effective
strategies to help reduce the existing digital divide in education. One of the most effective ways
is for the government to increase affordability to citizens. Due to the high cost of the internet,
many people do not have access to the internet. All teachers and students from every part of the
country need to be fully trained on how they can use the internet and modern technologies (Ong,
2020). It is also important for governments to increase technological opportunities for learners
with disabilities as well as those from disadvantaged communities.
The issue of digital divide in education is of a higher concern to many countries and
organizations. It is easy to understand why countries are concerned about the divide in education
since it affects access to educational resources to many students. However, a critical question for
this study is how this digital divide in education can be eliminated. By considering these
questions, this study will provide a comprehensive analysis of the digital divide in education by
studying information from different countries concerning the access to technology among
students. Another purpose of this study is looking at the problem from a global standpoint and
try understand the third world situation. This will help gain insights of the wideness of the digital
divide between countries. This study will also examine and provide effective recommendations
for bridging the digital gap in education.
Current literature provides significant information concerning different aspects of the
digital gap in education systems. First, the term digital divide is associated with disparities in
accessing new technologies. According to Hill & Lawton (2018), the disparities in ICT’s
intensity in education are wider than in others. This shows that the digital divide is increasing
and may become severe if significant measures are not undertaken. Considering the direction and
miscellany of the digital divide in education, there is a critical need to conduct in-depth research
that covers every resolution facet of the digital divide including its root cause, state of
technology transformation, and its impacts. This literature review draws from already published
peer-reviewed sources that are relevant to the research study.
Recent research by Frolova, Rogach & Ryabova (2020), shows that approximately 90
percent of schools are equipped with computers, 80% are equipped with multimedia devices
while 70% have cable television and 90% have internet access. However, there are still some
inequalities such that some schools in disadvantaged districts and well as rural communities do
not have access to these resources. During COVID-19, the need to depend on online education
highlighted the digital gap that persists in society. In recent years, the education sector has
witnessed enormous changes due to the growing importance of schooling (Ong, 2020). From
whiteboards and chalks to digital concepts of smart classrooms, the education system has
generously greeted modern technology. These advancements in technology have transformed
schools around the globe and introduced new modes of education such as online classes, digital
assignments, and animated teaching. As a result, these novel modes of education have
encouraged schools to adopt various solutions and services, which assist to manage their
workflow and databases. Considering the COVID-19 crisis, a report on School ERP – Global
Market Trajectory & Analytics suggests that the global market for school ERP will grow at a
CAGR of 5.2% from 2020 to 2027 (Hill & Lawton, 2018). Additionally, the Global school
management software market is estimated at USD 388.6 million in 2020 and is expected to
approach USD 555.2 million by 2027 (Hill & Lawton, 2018). However, approximately 50
percent of schools in high poverty areas do not have access to current technology including the
internet and computers. Besides technological infrastructure is either poorly constructed or
limited in these areas.
In a similar study, Ye & Yang (2020), articulate that the digital divide results from the
knowledge gap between people who can access new technologies like cyberspace, mobile
phones, and computers, and those who cannot. The result of a greater digital divide in education
is an increasing level of inequality between the privileged and less privileged since knowledge is
becoming a contemporary main currency of success. Most less developed countries in the world,
have been experiencing a lag in terms of achieving sustainable technology. Due to this lag in the
achievement of sustainable technology, they have become a subject to many education
challenges (Hill & Lawton, 2018). The quest for sustainable development is critical for the future
of education and technology strategies and choices cannot be addressed without paying attention
to sustainability concerns affecting the vulnerable students and school districts.
In their article Macevičiūtė & Wilson (2018) argue that there are three reasons why
individual students may not have Internet access. The first is the “last mile” problem. In rural
areas, cable companies do not connect sparsely populated homes because it is not cost-effective
to do so. In this case, the government should step in and require cable companies to connect the
“last mile” homes. They could pass on the cost to all subscribers. It would mean a modest
increase in the monthly fees for all subscribers. The second is that cable or digital phone service
is available, but families cannot afford the monthly cost of service. In this case, the government
should provide a stipend to families earning below a certain minimum income, to be applied
toward cable or digital phone service. The third reason is the family cannot afford to buy a
computer (Macevičiūtė & Wilson, 2018). This is again where the government could step in a set
up a program by which families could buy a basic desktop or laptop computer through the school
at a reduced interest rate. Monthly payments should be set up at zero percent interest.
Similarly, Virshkaie (2020) argues that the solution to the problem of the digital divide in
education should rather be that government, schools, colleges, and NGOs should step forward
and play a major role by helping the underprivileged students by providing all the necessary
equipment. Also, citizens can take an initiative by setting a fund for the poor children and
contributing as much as possible to meet their educational needs. Some section of students in
many countries is still deprived of this revolutionary mode of education (online learning) due to
several factors (Macevičiūtė & Wilson, 2018). But it would not be right to stop teaching other
students too, who otherwise are capable to access online learning. In this case, people can work
together to provide deprived students an equal opportunity to learn. Governments should also
work to digitalize government schools. Different initiatives should be launched and run by
government authorities at almost zero charges to help students from all economic backgrounds
work hard and give wings to their dreams (Frolova, Rogach & Ryabova, 2020). Also, NGOs and
non-profit organizations should take a stand for bright students with economically weak
backgrounds by providing quality education through all possible means and modern
technological resources. This will help them become successful in life and mark their existence
According to Serrano‐Cinca, Muñoz‐Soro, & Brusca (2018), many initiatives can be
taken to reduce the digital gap in schools. Critical policies should be implemented to ensure all
schools and students have access to technology including students with disabilities. Different
organizations along with government agencies can obtain grants to expand access. They can also
set up vans equipped with mobile WiFi, laptops, and a wireless scanner/printer to assist lowincome communities in the city. Other agencies and cities should also come up with different
programs. Countries with less infrastructure can build their fiber network, to ensure schools have
fast internet access. Nowadays there is remote employment, is made possible with the Internet
(Ye & Yang, 2020). One non-profit that works as an intermediary between Silicon Valley and
There is comprehensive evidence indicating that digital divide in education significantly
leads to negative performance for the disadvantaged students. It is also clear that some
disadvantaged groups of students are likely to become more disadvantaged due to the digital
divide and continued technology exclusion in education (Ong, 2020). Ye & Yang (2020) also
provide critical insights on how the digital divide in education is impacting students. According
to the researchers while the “Digital Divide” has narrowed on campuses, individual students
whose families lack resources do not have access to the Internet at home and are more likely to
be affected by the phenomenon. Lorente, Arrabal & Pulido-Montes (2020) provide effective
strategies that can help eradicate digital in education. According to the researchers, low-income
earners cannot afford to buy their children computers and smartphones because they are
expensive. By lowering the prices many students will have a chance to access different
technological devices to help them in their education (Macevičiūtė & Wilson, 2018). Another
effective strategy of bridging the digital divide in education is through digital skills
empowerment and acquisitions for schools, students, and teachers (Frolova, Rogach & Ryabova,
The research findings of this study are critical for practitioners and communication
practice because they provide critical evidence concerning the scope and impacts of digital
divide in education sector. With this information practitioners can come up with effective plans
of dealing with the problem and ensuring students are provided with all resources needed for
achieving better grades. Also, this information can be communicated to provide a critical
understanding of the issue. The research findings of this study are also critical for many countries
to create operative plans for solving the factors that widen the digital divide in education.
Nonetheless, the rigorous qualitative data collected in this study will provide comprehensive
knowledge reducing the problem of the digital gap in education. The information can also be
used to justify the collective motivational interests and increased government funding for
significant uses such as technological expansions.
This study will not only contribute to literature but will also provide effective
recommendations and strategies that can be employed to decrease the digital divide in education.
First, this study examines the digital gap in education. It also provides significant approaches that
can be used to help in technological expansion and hence reduce the digital gap in schools.
Fewer studies have focused on these areas and significant research will help many countries to
realize their potential and how they can develop their education systems rapidly through
technology (Vishkaie, 2020). The positive changes recommended in this research provide
countries with significant approaches, policies, and plans that are critical to educational
development and reducing the digital divide.
Frolova, E. V., Rogach, O. V., & Ryabova, T. M. (2020). Digitalization of Education in Modern
Scientific Discourse: New Trends and Risks Analysis. European journal of contemporary
education, 9(2), 313-336.
Hill, C., & Lawton, W. (2018). Universities, the digital divide, and global inequality. Journal of
higher education policy and management, 40(6), 598-610.
Lorente, L. M. L., Arrabal, A. A., & Pulido-Montes, C. (2020). The right to education and ICT
during covid-19: An international perspective. Sustainability, 12(21), 9091.
Macevičiūtė, E., & Wilson, T. D. (2018). Digital means for reducing digital inequality: Literature
review. Informing science: the international journal of an emerging transdiscipline, 21,
Ong, P. (2020). “COVID-19 and the digital divide in virtual learning.” UCLA Center for
Neighborhood Knowledge. https://escholarship.org/uc/item/07g5r002
Serrano‐Cinca, C., Muñoz‐Soro, J. F., & Brusca, I. (2018). A multivariate study of internet use
and the digital divide. Social Science Quarterly, 99(4), 1409-1425.
Vishkaie, R. (2020). The pandemic, war, and sanctions: Building resilience for the digital divide
in education. Interactions, 27(4), 36-37. https://doi.org/10.1145/3407232
Ye, L., & Yang, H. (2020). From digital divide to social inclusion: A tale of mobile platform
empowerment in rural areas. Sustainability, 12(6), 2424. 10.3390/su12062424