According to Doug Levin and Sousan Arafeh, authors of “The Digital Disconnect: The Widening Gap Between Internet Savvy Students and Their Schools,” students make reference to five different metaphors for how they think about and use the Internet for school: as virtual textbook and reference library; as virtual tutor and study shortcut; as virtual study group; as virtual guidance counselor; as virtual locker, backpack, and notebook. These metaphors are not mutually exclusive. They operate in parallel fashion in students’ minds. The most Internet-savvy students are able to shift effortlessly and unconsciously among any or all of them during any one online session (Levin & Arafeh 6-7).
I highly recommend reading this article to better understand students' perceptions about technology use and how students believe their educational experiences can be improved.
We can learn a great deal from our students and model for them how we, too, are lifelong learners, willing to analyze and integrate new information and new methodologies.