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Third Party Findings - Digital Literacy and the Expectations of FE

Page history last edited by bradyx 12 years ago




Third Party Findings – Digital Literacy and the Expectations of FE




To identify the role that FE institutions need to play in the development of digital literacy skills we decided to look at the roles and expectations of the education establishments prior to further education (schools) and those FE students progress onto (Universities).


This small scale enquiry will offer a backdrop of what expectations third party providers subconsciously or even consciously demand of us. This will help us identify our role as a change agent between schools and H.E. and also within the bigger picture of the digital literacy skills needed to develop and function through a lifelong journey.


Fig 1.1: Our position in the lifelong learning journey










Schools are at the very beginning of the learning journey and play a very large role in introducing learners to technology in the classroom, the internet and where to source information for studies.

We spoke with a range of schools both primary and secondary regarding digital literacy and the umbrella terms and processes in their day to day teaching and learning. Those contacted and interviewed were two primary schools, two secondary schools and a Senior ICT Representative from the LEA.


The bulleted summary below offer s an overview of the most frequently raised points:


  • Fully aware of Google/searching the internet with some input and guidance on use – very much up to individual schools/teachers how this is done
  • ICT Embedded within teaching and classroom learning – at the discretion of curriculum area and teacher how this is done
  •  ICT taught as a stand alone subject – more influenced  by MS Office applications
  •  No standardised/consistent VLE use – not every school makes use of a VLE
  • There are library inductions but little reinforcement throughout the academic year unless relevant to a particular topic or point in curriculum
  • Social media/mobile devices use already evident – issues raised about social distraction on learning
  •   E-Safety covered but not necessarily reinforced throughout the year
  •  Pupils very familiar with digital tools for communication/socialising/MS Office, not as much awareness of using technology for assisting independent learning (beyond office applications and basic Google search)
  •   Learning literacies/Independent Learning Skills/ Information evaluation skills – Basic levels in most cases
  •  No ongoing formal support for library based/learning/information literacies using technology.
  •  Surface level abilities and support- deemed age appropriate understanding of what technology is capable of especially in the primary age ranges.



Higher Education Institutions


We asked Higher Education providers involved in the JISC Digital Literacy project to input into this section. We gained input from a range of institutions around the country and this was conducted in the form of a digital open ended questionnaire.


The bulleted summary below offer s an overview of the most frequently raised points:








The FE Gap – we need to be aware that as and FE provider have a role to play in developing the skills of school leavers to meet the expectations of HE institutions.

Currently we do this

We need to focus more on this – this is a huge jump blah – it appears our role is to:

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