Quote: "Without the internet all of us suffer. The digital divide also impacts children's ability to learn and grow in low-income school districts. Without Internet access, students are unable to cultivate necessary tech skills in order to understand today's dynamic economy. Their parents cannot get a job, the families cannot access medical services, complete the U.S. Census online, receive COVID-19 financial relief, and obtain any information in a timely manner that allows one to make better choices as they can be better informed." John DiRuggiero, New Mexico - GIS Director, Community Learning Network
The Department of Information Technology (DoIT) created the New Mexico Broadband (NMBB) Map below, which displays the available broadband Internet services by technology in the State of New Mexico. This application also allows you to find available Internet Service Providers (ISPs) for your area of interest.
ArcGIS Web Application
What is the Digital Divide?The digital divide is the gap between those who have access to technology, the internet and digital literacy training and those who do not.
Quote: According to Stanford University, "The 'Digital divide' refers to the growing gap between the underprivileged members of society, especially the poor, rural, elderly, and handicapped portion of the population who do not have access to computers or the internet; and the wealthy, middle-class, and young Americans living in urban and suburban areas who have access."
Access Data on the Digital Divide in New Mexico
UPDATED 2/8/21. # New Mexico School Districts, The Digital Divide in Education, Households with internet and computers, Center for Community Analysis New Mexico State University, New Mexico Public Education
Obstacles to Closing the Digital Divide:
- The cost associated with the subscription to Internet service
- The cost of a device to use the broadband service
- A person’s lack of existing digital literacy skills, like how to use the internet or device
- The perceived lack of relevance or benefit to the person’s life
Closing the Digital Divide requires:
- Affordable, robust broadband internet service
- Internet-enabled devices that meet the needs of the user
- Access to digital literacy training and digital skills development
- Quality technical support
- Applications and online content designed to enable and encourage self-sufficiency, participation and collaboration, as well as cultural relevancy
The Digital Divide and New Mexican Native StudentsWhen Access is Remote - The Digital Divide for Native Students
video link from NM Center on Law and Poverty
What is the Homework Gap?The gulf that exists between students and families that have access to computers and the internet and those who do not.
The Homework Gap is part of the digital divide and can affect a student’s ability to:
- Complete homework
- Be academically successful
- Build the foundation for a successful career
- Take advantage of economic opportunities
If you have never heard of the Homework Gap, this video will shock you: If You've Never Heard of the 'Homework Gap' This Video Will Shock You
What is Digital Inclusion?Activities necessary to ensure that all individuals and communities, including the most disadvantaged, have access to and use of information and communication technologies (ICTs)
Quote: "Digital inclusion must evolve as technology advances. Digital inclusion requires intentional strategies and investments to reduce and eliminate historical, institutional, and structural barriers to access and use of technology."Five elements of digital inclusion from National Digital Inclusion Alliance (NDIA)
1) affordable, robust broadband internet service
2) internet-enabled devices that meets the needs of the user
3) access to digital literacy training
4) quality technical support
5) applications and online content designed to enable and encourage self-sufficiency
What is Digital Literacy?According to the Quote: “Digital literacy” and “digital literacy training” mean many things to many people, from smartphone apps and Facebook for beginners to advanced coding and network management for career seekers. Local digital inclusion programs operate training programs that run the gamut of these topics. The National Digital Inclusion Alliance (NDIA):
Basic digital literacy training generally includes at least the following elements:
- Components of a computer
- Mouse and keyboard use as well as usually some keyboarding
- Using an internet browser
- Creating and using an email account
- Basics of word processing
- Privacy, security and data protection
- Finding trusted sources for additional learning
- A set of instructional videos found online or created by your organization to assist asynchronous learners
Often, people seeking digital literacy are interested in solving a particular problem. Others may approach it from a more general desire to learn what computers and the internet are all about. In the first case, this motivation may be used to provide the student with general skills to address their immediate need as well as further explorations of areas of interest. In the second, it can be useful to identify specific applications that capture their interest to provide a sense of accomplishment as they acquire these skills.
Broadband Basics:Speed - Speed is important because it allows for faster transmission of data (Uploading and Downloading) including text, images, sound, and video.
- Speed is measured in Megabits per Second (Mbps)
- Megabits per Second (Mbps) = million bits per second
- Download Speed = from the Internet to the User's computer
- Upload Speed = from the User's computer to the Internet
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recommends:
25/3 Mbps = 25 Mbps Download Speed and 3 Mbps Upload Speed (Slower services, such as dial-up, run at 56 Kbps and cannot transmit data as quickly.)
In New Mexico, we recommend:
The Vision for New Mexico recommends 25/10 Mbps = 25 Mbps Download Speed and 10 Mbps Upload Speed for each person in a household using the Internet
Internet Connectivity Speed - How fast is fast enough?Here are some general guidelines about download speeds and associated activities as they relate to your own household internet speed.
What you can do with 5 Mbps
- Streaming music
- Minimum for a single user
- Streaming HD videos
- Casual gaming
- Ultra HD streaming
- Frequent gaming
- Streaming multiple shows in HD
- Simultaneous gaming
- Needed for multiple users
Test your internet speedThe New Mexico Department of Information Technology (DoIT), implemented the New Mexico Broadband Program (NMBBP) and recommends that you conduct this Speed Test repeatedly during the week and at different times in the day or night. The NMBBP is gathering anonymous data by area, mapping results, and aggregating into categories to assess level of services within New Mexico. Please be assured individual addresses are not shared, yet speed information will be aggregated into neighborhood blocks to provide a picture of broadband performance area by area. This data will assist planning and funding requests for building more access to broadband. (See map at the beginning of this presentation.)
CLICK HERE to test your Internet connectivity and speed at different times of day and night.
Glossary of Terms
- Bandwidth: the rate at which data can be transmitted between your computer and the testing servers.
- kbps or kb/s: kilobits per second - a measure of Bandwidth. File sizes are normally indicated in terms of "bytes"; one byte is equal to 8 bits. In other words, 1000 kilobits per second is equal to 125 kilobits per second.
- Mbps or Mb/s: Megabits per second - another measure of Bandwidth. One Megabit is equal to 1024 kilobits. (Bits vs Bytes)
- Packet: a unit of data capable of being routed through a computer network.
- Latency: the time it takes for a single packet of data to be sent from your computer to the testing server and back (the "round trip" time). This is measured in milliseconds, or thousandths of a second.
- Jitter: a measure of the variability in Latency.
Digital Equity and Legislation in New Mexico
- Court orders state to provide students the technology they need
- Connect New Mexico Act - HB 10
- Broadband Access and Expansion Act - SB 93
To learn more about Connectivity in New Mexico visit Community Learning Network's Connectivity web pages
Developed by CommUNITY Learning Network (CLN) and CLN's "Teaching and Learning with GIS" team.CommUNITY Learning Network
Teaching and Learning with GIS