Digital Fluency

iskills-webinar-13In an increasingly technological world, teachers need to adapt to effectively use technology for learning. Digital fluency is the combination of being technologically proficient, digital literate and socially competent (Spencer, 2015). It means to be able to choose and recognise why certain technology will be most effective in and situation and being able to communicate this understanding to others. For students, this means being able to manipulate and move information across multiple media platforms (Holland, 2013).

“In the years ahead, digital fluency will become a prerequisite for obtaining jobs, participating meaningfully in society, and learning throughout a lifetime.”

(Resnick, 2002, p. 33)

I believe that students need to develop their digital fluency for three reasons (based on Howell, 2012):

  1. We are entering a global information society: The world we live in today is highly interconnected and the way we use technology has changed the skills necessary for the workforce.
  2. The Australian workforce needs to be digitally prepared: The use of digital media and platforms will be critical to the development of a highly skilled workforce.
  3. Life-long learning: Students will develop skills not only relevant to them during their school career but also post-schooling. It will help them engage with learning throughout their lifetime.

Some basic skills that students will acquire is learning how to use a mouse, typing on a keyboard and using Word, Powerpoint, Excel etc. In order to develop digital fluency, educators need to students to build on these skills by using new technology they may not be familiar with e.g. blogging, animation, podcasts. In doing so, they become digital learners who are able to use tools to enhance their understanding, solve problems and develop and discuss new ideas.


References

Holland, B. (2013, Decmber 16). Building Technology Fluency: Preparing Students to be Digital Learners [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://www.edutopia.org/blog/building-tech-fluency-digital-learners-beth-holland

Howell, J. (2012). Teaching With ICT: digital pedagogies for collaboration & creativity. South Melbourne, VIC: Oxford University Press.

Jonathan Martin. (2011). Digital Fluency Framework [Image]. Retrieved from https://21k12blog.net/2011/10/25/digital-fluency-and-the-new-ets-iskills-assessment/

Resnick, M. (2002). Rethinking Learning in the Digital Age. In G. Kirkman (Ed.), The global information technology report: Readiness for the networked word. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

Spencer, K. (2015, October 30). What is digital fluency? [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://blog.core-ed.org/blog/2015/10/what-is-digital-fluency.html

White, Gerald K. (2013). Digital fluency : skills necessary for learning in the digital age. Melbourne: ACER.


 

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