Education is seen as a route to full participation in society, and widening participation in education and lifelong learning as a way of including those who are currently excluded from many of the benefits of society. The use of learning technology is perceived as a means of widening participation in higher education by enabling participation by non-traditional students. E-learning is perceived as lowering barriers of time and space to enable non-traditional students to attend campus-based education while accessing resources at a time and place of their choosing. This research finds a digital divide with some students financially unable to afford technology and broadband access, others without the skills to engage with learning technology, and some culturally less able to benefit from technological enrichment. It also finds gender and generational differences disenfranchising some students.
Sims, Julian; Powell, Phillip; and Vidgen, Richard, "eLearning and the Digital Divide: Perpetuating Cultural and Socio-Economic Elitism in Higher Education" (2005). ECIS 2005 Proceedings. Paper 117.