Reading Comprehension | The Digital Divide

Develop your reading skills. Read the following text about the digital divide and do the comprehension questions

Digital DivideThe term digital divide refers to the gap between those who have ready access to computers and the Internet, and those who do not. More precisely, it is an economic and social inequality with regard to access to, use of, or impact of information and communication technologies (ICT). This definition includes the skills to make use of ICT as an important element. Research shows that the digital divide is more than just an access issue and cannot be alleviated merely by providing the necessary equipment. More than just accessibility, individuals need to know how to make use of the information and communication tools once they exist within a community.

The digital divide may exist within the same country or between differing countries or regions of the world. In fact, within many countries including the industrialized ones, there are inequalities between individuals, households, businesses, or geographic areas, usually at different socioeconomic levels. For instance, the marginalized members of society, like the poor, rural, elderly, and handicapped portion of the population do not have access to computers or the internet. However, the wealthy, middle-class population and those living in urban areas are luckier to be digitally active members of society.

At the global level, the digital divide may refer to the divide between differing countries or regions of the world. This divide is also called global digital divide and it exists mainly between developing and developed countries on an international scale. In fact, developing countries are missing a historic opportunity to take a quantum leap forward to develop their own productive and creative capacities, and become integrated into the global virtual economy. It is believed that less developed nations could gain quick access to economic growth if the information infrastructure were to be developed and well used. By improving the latest technologies, certain countries and industries are able to gain a competitive advantage.

Finally, it is thought provoking to see that interaction between human and computers has greatly increased as we enter the twenty-first century. Digital literacy has become of paramount importance for people who want to to be part of the global society and economy.

Source: Wikipedia


  1. So as to decrease the digital divide, it is sufficient to equip marginalized individuals and developing countries with computers and access to the Internet.
    a. True
    b. False
  2. The terms "digital divide" and "global digital divide" can be used interchangeably.
    a. True.
    b. False.
  3. The phrase "quantum leap" means:
    a. a very big change or improvement
    b. a jump

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