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Boomers, Gen-Xers, and Millenials: Understanding the New Students

Boomers, Gen-Xers, and Millenials: Understanding the New Students

Excellent article on the plugged-in, gaming, techno-thinking and needs of the new learner that demands a technology-mediated teaching response from higher education


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Pete Sasso
Pete Sasso (Staff)
14 years ago
I have been observing behavior as a student affairs practitioner for almost a year now. As a "20-something," I am on the bubble between Generation X and the Millennial generation, I find myself stuck between two generations having not truly grown up with the internet or cell phones. I still remember using rotary phones and white walls on tires! I find this article written by Oblinger to be truly insightful. The one issue I find to be most salient is the issue of trial-and-error learning. Our nation has produced a generation of “push-click.” It is almost as if Millennials have the sense that if something does not work, “Let’s try it again or try something else until it does function as we want it to.” This eventually becomes an issue of sustainability and therein lays two enduring questions: How many resources will this generation exhaust in their trial and error? When will they figure out where to draw the line if something is actually not feasible and they cannot just keep attempting to “push-click” to see if it functions?