The Arrival of Web 2.0



Web 2.0 is the term that is being used for the new direction that the internet is taking. A key element of the new technology is that it allows people to create, share, collaborate and communicate – key requirements that have come from the benefits of using social media in the classroom. Web 2.0 applications include wikis, blogs, social networking sites, podcasting and content hosting services (Thompson, 2008). These are the social media sites that are commonly being used in education. With the introduction of Web 2.0 will it lead to social media being regarded more highly and used more widely in the classroom?

Young people are particularly attracted to the new developments that Web 2.0 brings and this is what kick started the use of these technologies in classroom settings, as discussed however, the advantages and disadvantages of Web 2.0 applications is still at great debate. Some educators feel that Web 2.0 will lead to a complete transformation a ‘re-booting’ of teaching and learning while others see Web 2.0 as a cause to panic about young people and the death of education.  It has been pointed out that Web 2.0 is still evolving which makes it easier to adapt to the needs of educational agendas (Selwyn, 2008).

Web 2.0 has led to a change in our relationship with information. Students have everything they need to know at the tips of their fingers – literally. Learners are no longer part of the ‘audience’ of information but can be actively involved with the gathering and sharing (Hargadon, 2008). Web 2.0 is changing how we feel towards information and teachers are now having to educate on how to deal with this new ‘information overload’ – putting an entirely new dimension on how students learn.

Web 2.0 is what has directed this change in technology in the classroom, bringing the social media to a new light. Hargadon believes that Web 2.0 plays to the strength of educators, their curiosity and love of learning – Web 2.0 has opened the doors to new styles of collaborative and participatory learning. Students and educators have a natural desire to share what they know and learn from others (Hargadon, ND).

The introduction of Web 2.0 has created many opportunities for constructivist learning. Information has become easier to access and the way knowledge is used has led to a change in the way we communicate and interact. Web 2.0 has fostered an emphasis on participating, doing and experiencing, rather than knowing what or where – a constructivist approach (Mcloughlin, 2008).

Web 2.0 tools have led to a dramatic shift in the way information and knowledge is gather and the way we process information. The use of these technologies by the younger generation or ‘digital natives’, has led to a need for a different style of learning. This leads us to the question ‘To what extent does social media belong in education?’

Image by Neoformix

Anderson, P. (2007). Whats is Web 2.0? Ideas, technologies and implications for education. Technology and Standards Watch, 1-63.

Hargadon, S. (2008, October 22). Moving Towards Web 2.0 in K12 Education. Retrieved December 24, 2013, from Encyclopedia Britannica:

Hargadon, S. (ND). Educational Networking: The Important Role Web 2.0 Will Play in Education. Retrieved December 26, 2013, from edtechlive:

Mcloughlin, C. (2008). Mapping the Digital Terrain: New Media and Social Software as Catalysts for Pegagogical Change. Retrieved December 26, 2013, from ascilite:

Selwyn, N. (2008). Education 2.0 Designing the wen for teaching and learning. Technology Enhanced Learning, 3-33.

Thompson, H. (2008). Wikis, Blogs and Web 2.0 Technology. University Of Melbourne, 1-21.





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