Having good digital literacy skills just makes sense in a digital world.
The messages we create and consume, along with the information we generate and absorb daily, all require digital literacy skills to some degree.
So if you’re new to them, this infographic from Time to Know called Essential Digital Literacy Skills for the 21st Century Worker is a good start.
It was featured on E-Learning Infographics in a post that cites the work of Professor Yoram Eshet, a leader in digital literacy research from the Open University of Israel. Prof. Eshet published a paper in 2004 on this subject called Digital Literacy: A Conceptual Framework for Survival Skills in the Digital Era. It is just as relevant today, if not more so, than it was back then. He says this about the importance of mastering digital literacy skills for living in an increasingly interconnected world:
“Digital literacy involves more than the mere ability to use software or operate a digital device; it includes a large variety of complex cognitive, motor, sociological, and emotional skills, which users need in order to function effectively in digital environments … for example, ‘reading’ instructions from graphical displays in user interfaces; using digital reproduction to create new, meaningful materials from existing ones … evaluating the quality and validity of information; and have a mature and realistic understanding of the ‘rules’ that prevail in the cyberspace.”
The paper goes on to describe 5 key digital literacy skills which are summarized below, taken from the article itself:
Photo-Visual Literacy: In working with graphic user interfaces, this helps them to “read” intuitively and freely, and to understand the instructions and messages represented visually.
- Information Literacy: The ability to know when there is a need for information, to be able to identify, locate, evaluate, and effectively use that information for the issue or problem at hand.”
- Socio-Emotional Literacy: This means being able to avoid “traps” as well as derive benefits from the advantages of digital communication. It involves mainly sociological and emotional aspects of work in cyberspace.
- Reproduction Literacy: Digital reproduction literacy is the ability to create a meaningful, authentic, and creative work or interpretation, by integrating existing independent pieces of information.
- Branching Literacy: This pertains to the skills of knowledge construction using information that was accessed in a non-linear manner.
We agree with these skills, which is why we made sure learners can explore such abilities inherently with the Essential Fluencies. So without further delay, here are 5 top digital literacy skills to teach your modern learners.
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