Teaching the Google-eyed YouTube generation

Bill Ashraf*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to report on how the University sector in the UK has undertaken a massive transformation over recent years, resulting in a current mass market. Institutions (and their managers) are facing enormous challenges to establish competitive advantages whilst attending to customer need and focus. A smarter, cost-effective, lean teaching and learning environment needs to evolve in order for UK universities to compete in a flatter global educational market place. Design/methodology/approach – Adopting an action research methodology the paper seeks to analyze how much-hyped Web 2.0, which moves away from static “read only” web sites to those which are “read-write” and interactive and are clearly here to stay. An eclectic mix of multi-media technology and social networking, blogs, Wikis, podcasts, RSS feeds, social software, broadband and megalithic search engines are changing the way people live – and learn. Findings – This paper considers and highlights opportunities for increasing operational efficiency, from a personal perspective, based on a blended approach to technology enhanced learning by creating a 24/7 learning environment for the Google-eyed YouTube generation. The challenges of teaching large groups of students from a very diverse range of backgrounds and abilities are also discussed. Originality/value – This article balances interests in the immense potential of Web 2.0 in teaching and learning, with concern for the limitations of the technology.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)343-352
Number of pages10
JournalEducation + Training
Issue number5-6
Publication statusPublished - 26 Jun 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Communication technologies
  • Internet
  • Universities
  • Worldwide web

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