Completed the first week of the Blended Learning Essentials: Developing Digital Skills online course. Comparing to the previous two Blended Learning Essentials courses, it includes more learning design activities. Although it says 4 hours per week are required, I still feel it’s not enough. If I read all comments and responded all questions, I would double or triple the time.
This course focuses on developing learners’ digital skills for successful employment and modern workplace. What digital skills employers are looking for? How can education help students to gain the skills?
The University of Leeds and UCL have developed a Digital Skills Framework which includes four themes:
- Managing digital identity
- Managing digital information
- Creating digital content
- Collaborating digitally online.
This week is about the Digital identity and Digital Information, and the next week it will be more about the Digital content creation and Digital collaboration. One of our activities was to find the requirements for digital skills in job descriptions in our own area. Interestingly I read a tweet recently about “Learning Technologist” and “Learning Designer”. My opinion is that they have little difference about required digital skills but some differences of the levels of requirements for pedagogic and research knowledge. Linking to the course activity, I list brief examples between the two according to the digital skills requirements.
|Digital Skills||Learning Technologist / Educational Technologist (job essential criteria examples)||Learning Designer / Institutional Designer (job essential criteria examples)|
|Digital Content Creation||
When we talk about Digital identity, using digital badges is one way to motivate learners to gain more skills and do better. For example, the Employability passport set up by the Sussex Downs College. Primarily, I hope educational institutions and employers develop more agreements on digital capabilities and issue relevant digital badges widely.
Some other digital skills frameworks (see below) are also useful. Basically for me, apart from subject knowledge, what we teach and what students need to gain are the skills that enable them to be adaptive, transferable, resilient and learn how to learn.
- All Aboard project – Digital Skills Metro Map (by NUI Galway, University College Dublin, the University of Limerick, and Mary Immaculate College Limerick)
- JISC Digital Capability Framework
- Open University Digital Skills Framework
- The 8 Core Digital Competencies (slide 10, by Grovo)
As usual, I learned new resources:
- Tech Nation 2016 Transforming UK Industries – An annual report that said “… digital jobs and activity are becoming ever more important in traditionally non-digital areas of the economy.” Yes, I haven’t found a job that does not use digital technology completely nowadays.
- OneFile – a training eportfolio, an assessment software, a CPD tracker, a dynamic reporting suite and a virtual learning environment.
- Weebly – a free online tool for building a good quality website from scratch. I have seen Wix as a free online website-building tool due to advertisements.