Technology in Education: The Legal, Social and Ethical

Technology in Education:
The Legal, Social and
Ethical Issues
Julie Lewis
EDUC 318
May 20, 2010
Ethical Issues
For Safety and Security
Social networking
Acceptable Use Policies
Cyber Bullying
Student Data
Internet Privacy
Social Networking
• “Social Networking” = MySpace,
Facebook, etc.
• Concerns for parents and educators:
narcissism, gossip, wasted time,
“friending”, hurt feelings, ruined
reputations, and even dangerous
What Can Teachers Do?
• Allowing students to utilize academic social
networking websites teaches digital
citizenship to students
• Teachers can develop social networking
contracts for students, if the school or
school district does not have one.
Acceptable Use Policies
• What constitutes acceptable use?
Includes not giving out personal information, not
participating in off-line meetings or activities, and privacy
• What should Acceptable Use Policies
Risks associated with computer communication;
rules for efficient, ethical and legal computer/
network usage; safe/appropriate computer social
behavior; use of available and unavailable services
What Can Teachers Do?
• If your school or school district does not
have an Acceptable Use Policy, then write
your own
• Teachers need to enforce Acceptable Use
• Netiquette is defined as “courtesy in
information processing” or “etiquette on the
• Responding promptly to email messages
• Not using school systems for personal
• Not sending flame mail
What Can Teachers Do?
• Teachers should model ethical online
behavior for students
• Conduct training sessions for students and
hold classroom discussions
• Participate in role playing, games and
simulations with students
Cyber Bullying
• Cyber Bullying is “the act of sending or
posting harmful or cruel text or images
using the Internet or other communication
• Children who are victims portray low selfesteem, depression, anxiety and anger
• Some students do not perceive cyber
bullying as a form of bullying behavior
What Can Teachers Do?
• Promote cyber-ethics in the classroom as
students do online research
• Assign news articles related to cyber
bullying incidents for student reading and
class discussion
• Have students write in response
journals as part of a classroom
Student Data
• The Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA)
“mandates the development of an Internet
safety plan that addresses the unauthorized
disclosure, use and dissemination of personal
identification information regarding minors”
• Parents are uncomfortable with the amount
of personal info that is collected about
their children.
What Can Teachers Do?
• Be knowledgeable of the laws and policies
associated with student data confidentiality on
the federal, state, and district level
• Teachers should exercise caution when
student information is transmitted via email,
which forms a permanent record
• Educate their students regarding
respecting the privacy of other students
Internet Privacy
• Privacy is defined as “the right to be left
alone”. However, the technology and the
infrastructure of the Internet do not give users
that choice.
• Criminal predators use very creative
techniques, including online observation, to
find out about children.
What Can Teachers Do?
• Educate students about Internet privacy,
especially the use and abuse of personal
• Teach students how to recognize, avoid and
handle situations where their privacy will be
compromised and their lives put in danger
• Create safe, monitored learning
Digital Divide
Resource Equity
Teacher bias
• Females and minorities that are not
encouraged to use technology are more
likely than others to perform poorly
• Information technology is often perceived
as a male subject
What Can Teachers Do?
• Ensure that technology is taught in a manner
that encourages and engages all students
• Be a proponent for equal opportunity and
treatment, providing instruction and guidance
that crosses gender barriers
• Be supportive, especially for female
students, in their pursuits into the
information technology field
• Minority groups face multiple barriers to
information technology use, including lack of
role models, unconscious stereotyping, false
perceptions of interest, and limited access to
• 2001 Census Bureau Report revealed that
computer usage among students, ages
6-17, is nearly equal across differences
in income, race and ethnic groups
What Can Teachers Do?
• Challenge students with higher-level
technology activities
• Offer additional assistance to those students
that are not as familiar with technology and
the use of the Internet
• Incorporate technology into their lesson
• Computer and Internet usage is higher among
Whites than Blacks and Hispanics, and higher
among Asians and American Indians than
among Hispanics
• The digital divide among racial lines may be
closing, according to the National Center
for Education Statistics
What Can Teachers Do?
• Provide equitable access to computers and
the Internet to all students
• Advocate for computers in their classrooms
and the school, looking for grant
opportunities, donations, etc.
• Allow additional time for students to utilize
computers at school and incorporate
technology into assignments.
Resource Equity
• 2001 Census Bureau Report Findings
White Households
57.7% Own a Computer
39.5% Have Internet
African American
37% Own a Computer
20.5% Have Internet
• Many students only access the Internet
at school
What Can Teachers Do?
• Play a key role in providing equitable access
to all student groups in learning computer
• Make computers and the Internet accessible
outside of normal school hours
• Model technology use in the classroom
Teacher Bias
• Many teachers
assume that girls
are not interested
in information
What Can Teachers Do?
• Teachers can be influential in shaping female
students interest in technology
• Be fair and equitable to all students when
considering technology, regardless of gender,
race or socio-economic status
• Be supportive of all students with regard to
Legal Use of Digital Media
• Copyright
• Fair Use
• Creative
• Copyright is “the legal right of
authors to prohibit others from
copying their work”
What Can Teachers Do?
• Set an example for their students and be a
role model by following the laws themselves
• Educate students on giving proper credit to
the author/owner when using information
prepared by them and also how to
• Educate students on how to correctly cite an
author’s work
Fair Use
• A “doctrine in copyright law that allows limited
use of copyrighted material without requiring
permission from the rights-holder. It provides
for the legal incorporation of copyrighted
material into another work under limited
• Incorporates four factors: the purpose of
use, the nature of the work, the portion
used, and the effect on the market
What Can Teachers Do?
• Create a Fair Use handout for students,
including instructions on portion limitations
• Educate students on the importance of giving
credit for the materials used and how to
correctly cite the source
• Educate students on following Fair Use
guidelines when using quotations in
their writings
Creative Commons
• Is “a set of licensing tools that stands
between the All Rights Reserved of traditional
copyright and No Rights Reserved that is the
public domain”
• Applies to text, blogs, music, audio,
recordings, podcasts, photographs, videos,
songs, websites, and films found on the
What Can Teachers Do?
• Refer students to the Flickr Creative
Commons search page
• Use the search portal on Creative Commons
for lesson plans freely shared by other
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