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ERIC Number: ED556842
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 279
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3038-3777-7
Digital Engagement: Learning Experiences of Alternative High School Students within a Technology Integrated Triad Model
Gurung, Binod
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, New Mexico State University
Alternative high school students are the at-risk students of educational failure lacking behavioral, emotional, and cognitive engagement with school and the schoolwork. They are also generally considered as the at-risk computer users, who use technology for development of skills and drill and practice when compared to their regular counterparts, who use technology for creativity and critical thinking. But, with the pervasiveness of technology in every classroom and in the lives of today's new generation of students, technology has also penetrated the public alternative schools and programs impacting student engagement in multi-faceted ways. There is also a general perception that when the alternative students are engaged with digital tools and resources their diverse learning needs are met. But, the studies show that the use of technology for at-risk students is often minimal, problematic, and ineffective or at the best, mixed results--differentially effective to different students. In this context, using the phenomenological research method, this study explored and examined the digital engagement--the learning engagement with digital tools and resources--of the five alternative high school students within their learning ecologies including their everyday life and the learning contexts of the Triad model at South West Alterative High School (SWABS), a pseudonym. The data obtained from the "three-series interviews" were analyzed (Seidman, 1998) and from the analysis there emerged the "textural" and "structural" findings (Moustakas, 1994). The textural findings include the seven emergent themes common to all five participants: the participant himself or herself; family, friends, and siblings; lived experiences; school engagement; becoming an alternative student; renewal of intentionality; and digital engagement. And the structural findings showed that the participants' digital engagement was subjective or differential, evolving/progressive, proactive, and multidimensional, and also problematic. The participants had developed a set of personal digital habits of their own, similar to that of the "digital natives" (Prensky, 2001) and the "net generation youth" (Tapscott, 2008); and their personal digital habits overlapped with their digital engagement inside the classroom. Finally, recommendations, pedagogical implications, and areas for future research pertaining to the alternative students' digital engagement are discussed, particularly highlighting their digital habits, aptitudes, and abilities in the classroom learning contexts and in the larger context of educational technology and research. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A