High-tech, hard work: An investigation of teachers’ work in the digital age

Neil Selwyn, Selena Nemorin, Nicola F Johnson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


This paper explores the ways in which digital technologies are now implicated in the work – and specifically the labour – of school teachers. Drawing upon qualitative studies in two Australian high schools, the paper examines the variety of ways in which teachers’ work is now enacted and experienced along digital lines. In particular, the paper highlights the association of digital technologies with the standardization, evidencing, intensification and altered affect of teachers’ work. The paper questions the extent to which these trends might be seen as constituting ‘new’ forms of labour, with the research data pointing to continuities and disjunctures in terms of teachers’autonomy and professionalization. The paper also considers how these conditions are experienced in different ways across the teaching workforce. The paper concludes by reflecting on how fairer and/or empowering working conditions might be achievable through alternate uses of digital technology.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)390-405
Number of pages16
JournalLearning, Media and Technology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • digital technology
  • interviews
  • labour theory
  • Teachers
  • technology uses

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