Digital literacy: competencies performed in specific technologies or a must-have skill for the 21st century?

Randolph Hollingsworth's picture

Have you seen the latest issue of JOLT?  In the most recent issue of MERLOT Journal of Online Learning and Teaching (JOLT), you'll find a couple of interesting articles on the concepts of digital literacy... or eLiteracy, computer literacy, media literacy... We all use different terms for basically the same concept in our policy documents or in teaching/learning practices.

Gallardo-Echenique, E. et al. Digital Competence in the Knowledge Society. MERLOT Journal of Online Learning and Teaching 11.1 (March 2015): 1-16. Web. http://jolt.merlot.org/vol11no1/Gallardo-Echenique_0315.pdf

The Spanish researchers who collaborated on this literature review found that there is not much consensus yet about what is required to observe, perform or evaluation digital literacy, but they know that it is crucial for navigating the world today. "While some perceive digital competence as the technical use of ICT [Information & Communication Technologies], others define it more broadly as knowledge application or 21st century skills."

The concept paper by Andart & Alexakis is even more pertinent to what we in H-Net are trying address these days with the shift from email-based communications to an interconnected network that demands small groupwork and "virtual" clusters of teams to keep the conversations going.

Andart, D. and Alexakis, G. Virtual Teaming and Digital Learning Strategies: Preparing Students for a Global Workplace. MERLOT JOLT 11.1 (March 2015): 122-149. Web. http://jolt.merlot.org/vol11no1/Alexakis_0315.pdf

If we apply our knowledge of team-based learning and group theory to H-Net group project planning, group development, and conflict resolution, we could model here in H-Net what we hope for our future scholars and their academic communities.

I look forward to hearing your response to the above articles and how they may or may not reflect issues we are trying to address with H-Net networks and the Commons. Once you subscribe to the H-Net Executive Council network, you can submit your reply to this post.

Randolph Hollingsworth, Ph.D.
H-Net President 2015
H-Kentucky Network Editor
University of Kentucky