Digital Competence in Primary Education and the Limits of 1:1 Computing


  • Fernando Fraga-Varela Universidad de Santiago de Compostela
  • Almudena Alonso-Ferreiro University of Vigo, Spain



digital competence, digital literacy, primary education, exclusion, 1:1 computing


Almost a decade after the massive incorporation of technology into schools in Galicia, Spain based on 1:1 computing programs, where teachers and students have access to laptop computers, this study explored the effects of technology on the lives of children in situations of socio-cultural and economic exclusion. Three case studies were selected from two research projects. Each case study representing three individuals. These studies were analyzed through an ethnographic approach using in-depth interviews and participant observation. The constant comparative method was used, supported by ATLAS.ti 7 qualitative analysis software. The 1:1 policies excluded the family context and the development of digital competence was heavily dependent on the opportunities provided at school. The results indicated that these policies did not reduce inequality because advanced learning experiences with information and communication technology were not provided at school.

Author Biographies

Fernando Fraga-Varela, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela

Fernando Fraga-Varela received a Ph.D. in research and innovation in didactics and school organization and is currently a professor at the University of Santiago de Compostela and a member of Stellae Group (GI-1439). He has combined the experience in classrooms with the work of research in the field of educational technology.

Almudena Alonso-Ferreiro, University of Vigo, Spain

Almudena Alonso-Ferreiro received a Ph.D. in design and innovation in education. Her research interests include educational technology, with a focus on digital competence, the training of future teachers, and the potential of the new media in educational processes. Stellae Group (GI-1439) and CIES-Uvigo Group.


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