By digital literacy we mean those capabilities which fit an individual for living, learning and working in a digital society: for example, the skills to use digital tools to undertake academic research, writing and critical thinking; as part of personal development planning; and as a way of showcasing achievements.
A couple of weeks ago I headed to LSE for one of their NetworkED seminars entitled “Putting digital and information literacies into practice.” It was delivered by Cathie Jackson, Janet Finlay and Joe Nichols from Cardiff University about their Digidol Project. It was one of those presentations where you come away inspired to do lots of things and also wondering where to begin.
Cardiff have a solid background in Information Literacy (IL), it has been part of the University’s Teaching and Learning Strategy since the early part of this century with a view to it being fully embedded. They explained that they have had a good top down buy in to IL and in turn this is helping with Digital Literacy. Cathie made a few excellent points about embedding IL (something close to my heart):
- Has to be embedded this is the only way it makes sense in academic context. It has to be entirely embedded and Not preserve of library but library provides support so academics can deliver IL.
- Subject Librarians worked with academic staff on a course by course level.
- Not too precise – what is comfortable for discipline.
She also mentioned the excellent Cardiff Information Literacy Resource bank which I myself have used and which academics can pull things from to use in their teaching. The items are deisgned so anybody anywhere could reuse them – worth pointing academics in our own institutions towards this resource.
- Difficult to talk about practices and attributes – core tasks tend to be combined.
- Practices need to be disciplinary based I.e. science versus arts
- Some disciplines expect a read paper.
- Tools are changing every week – using concept mapping including external tools and how they match the core tasks but also important to understand what people do I.e. tasks maps back to services this allows new technologies to be mapped back.
- Building on establishes iniatives
- Detailed in university strategies and action plans
- Key gatekeepers and decision makers
- Learning literacies development framework
- Promoting ac ownership
- Task and practice focused
- Linking services to practices – knowledge hub
- Initiating and maintaining conversations
- Building communities of interest
- Digital literacies: Hype or another type? (ashleytan.wordpress.com)
- Red Umbrella Day at Amplifon in Cardiff (amplifon.co.uk)
- On the Front Lines of Digital Inclusion (districtdispatch.org)
- Digital Literacy and Libraries: What’s Coming Next (slideshare.net)
- A Must Have Poster on Digital Literacy (educatorstechnology.com)