Audio Summation of digital fluency via SoundCloud
Further Learning on Digital Fluency
The script for Digital Fluency
The term digital fluency is used a lot in the current digital world, but what does it mean? Everybody uses the digital world in some form or another with varying competencies and expertise. Being able to engage with digital technologies does not make one digitally fluent, but the ability to produce things of significance with technology (Wang, Myers, Sunaram, 2012). Therefore, we can define digital fluency as someone who can not only select digital tools and knows what to do with them but can explain why they work in the way they do and how they might adapt what they do if the context were to change (Spencer, 2015).
Why is this important? As a teacher in the 21st century, it is very important to not only have digital fluency yourself but also be able to equip learners with the tools and expertise to become digitally fluent as well. Howell (2013) shows that digital learning can assist in developing literacy and numeracy, offer an alternative tool for creative and purposeful instruction and to develop a strong set of skills that children will carry and build upon while at school. The internet and the digital world is a fantastic tool which can be used to engage students and provide a wealth of knowledge but for the effectiveness of internet learning to be successful you must consider certain skills that are part of digital fluency. Critical thinking, collaboration, communication, problem-solving, topics of online safety, privacy, legal issues like copyright, acceptable behaviour, ethics, design skills, research skills, and technology terms (White, 2013).
A large part of digital fluency is having a combination of evaluation skills, critical thinking and specific knowledge of online functions to navigate a potentially hazardous online world (Bartlett, Miller, 2011). Simply put one must have a practical understanding of how the internet works, how websites are designed and built and how identities can be faked, and images and videos altered. Then use basic critical thinking and evaluation to assess the trustworthiness of the information or site and questioning the accurateness and look for evidence-based inquiry. Lastly the diversity of online consumption. Does the user use a broad range of competing pieces of information to get an unbiased opinion? Being aware of cognitive biases and the many pitfalls of scams and hoaxes on the internet.
All students have the right to participate in a digitally-enabled education system within the context of an ever-increasing digital society. Educators must work towards fluency in the way technology is used to not only keep ourselves safe but to also take full advantage of the life-long opportunities available through digital and information and communications technology learning (Spencer, 2015).
Bartlet, J., Miller, C. (2011). Truth, Lies and the Internet. A report into young people’s digital fluency. Retrieved from https://www.demos.co.uk/files/Truth_-_web.pdf
Howell, J. (2013). Teaching with ict : digital pedagogies for collaboration and creativity. Retrieved from https://ebookcentral.proquest.com
Spencer, K. (2015). What is Digital Fluency. Retrieved from http://blog.core-ed.org/blog/2015/10/what-is-digital-fluency.html
Wang, E., Myers, M. D., & Sundaram, D. (2012). Digital Natives and Digital Immigrants: towards a Model of Digital fluency. In ECIS (p. 39).
White, G. K. (2013). Digital fluency: skills necessary for learning in the digital age. Retrieved from https://research.acer.edu.au/digital_learning/6/