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Parallel Session 13.1 - “Digital Inequalities in Education by Design”

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Simon Collin

“Digital Inequalities in Education by Design”
Simon Collin, Université du Québec à Montréal
Digital inequalities in education have primarily been studied in terms of disparate technological access, uses, and skills embedded in academic and social inequalities (Brotcorne, 2022). However, it is possible to think that digital inequalities are configured upstream from the use of technologies by educational actors. From this systemic perspective, inequalities of use represent the culmination of a process of configuration of digital inequalities that begins with the design of educational technologies. To account for this, we draw on "social shaping of technology" studies from a critical perspective, borrowing the "script" metaphor developed by Akrich and Latour (1992). Applied to digital inequalities in education, the design and use of educational technologies constitute one and the same process during which power scripts are progressively forged and stabilized by certain actors (industrial, political, IT, educational) at the expense of others, particularly educational actors from disadvantaged environments. Thus, digital inequalities result from the greater or lesser convergence between the educational actors targeted by the design of educational technologies and those who use them.

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