16 SES 12 B, Digital Literacy
The new demands and challenges that have arisen from the Information and Knowledge Society have produced an increasing international interest towards the change of the educational plans. The social and educational development involve changes in the curriculum and the learning conception (Esteve, Adell & Gisbert, 2013; Mishra & Kereluik, 2011). This new context requires new skills for being competent citizens in our current society. Some of these are referred to the use of technologies. According to that, in recent years one of the central issues in the educational debate is related to this skills acquisition process. Mainly, literature focuses on those named transferable skills, which could be defined as the generic and necessaries ones for the participation in the 21st century society (OECD, 2005). As European Commission (2007) points out, the digital competence (DC) is a basic competence essential for all the citizens. The definition of the DC depends on every author and it have evolved pretty through the years. But, as a common statement, we can understand that a digital literate student is the one who is able to create knowledge using diverse information sources and curating the content (Ferrari, 2012).
Many authors as Oblinger & Oblinger (2005), Prensky (2001) or Tapscott (1998) say that the generation which is born since the 80’s has a group of common characteristics which makes them different from the previous ones. That’s just because they have grown up in a technological and digital environment. However, other authors query those statements. Gallardo-Echenique, Marqués-Molías, Bullen & Strijbo (2015) and Kennedy et al. (2009) take into account that usually those skills are related with social and recreational activities but they are not able to transfer them in their own learning processes. Taking into account this reality, higher education should guarantee the development of these competences to the students in order to make them capable of using them in their own learning process. In fact, OCDE (2005) suggests that the key competences are those ones which are necessary for the personal development and realization, active participation in citizenship, social inclusion and employment. And, in the same way of thinking, Erstad (2010) proposes that to improve the digital formation of young people it is essential the progress towards: (1) a new participatory culture; (2) the access to the information; (3) new communicational possibilities; and (4) new ways of content production.
Considering the ideas presented previously, the development of the Digital Competence is an important focus for the European educational research and, specifically, for our investigation context. According to that conception we can find some projects funded by the national research plan of the Spanish Ministry like SIMUL@: evaluation of a simulation technological environment for the learning of transversal competences in the university (Ref. EDU2008-01479/EDUC) or SIMUL@B: 3D simulations laboratory for the digital teaching competence development (Ref. EDU2013-42223-P). After the experience of those research projects our group wants to enhance the work associated to those digital abilities.
For this reason, the present project wants to improve the formation plan related to the digital competence and skills of the students from a Catalan University in a, more or less, three years period of time. According to that, our first-year principal occupation is to analyse the situation and the literature, so our main aims are:
A1. Define the concept Digital competence related with university students.
A2. Analyse the level of the Digital Competence of the first-year students in a Catalan university.
This project has planned an Educational Design Research (EDR) approach (Plomp & Nieveen, 2009; van den Akker et al., 2006), a systematic process for designing, developing and evaluating an educational intervention (the formation plan) as a solution to a complex problem. It is structured in three phases: (1) preliminary, that involves the literature review and context analysis; (2) iterative design, and (3) final assessment. In order to achieve the objectives presented previously and acquire a good base to make the improvement proposal for development of the digital competence in that university two actions have been designed: 1. A systematic review of the literature: between the years 1990-2017 in the main databases the educational research field. Those are ERIC, Scopus and WoS (Web of Science). The sear was done with two keywords related to the digital skills (Digital Competence or Digital Literacy) and two more, specifically focusing on the context (University or Higher Education). The purpose of this action is to define the concept of Digital Competence and also to analyse some similar practices which were explained experience-based papers. 2. A questionnaire: Specifically questionnaire INCOTIC, which according to González, Esteve, Larraz, Espuny & Gisbert (2018) is a tool that has been created to carry out a self-diagnosis of the digital competence on first grade students with the intention of being able to adjust the teaching according to the presented needs. The purpose of such action is to know the level of perception regarding digital competence of university students in the analyzed context. This questionnaire was administered to 168 undergraduate students. Those are the first-year actions (preliminary phase) but not the only ones. After that, in the next two years the research group will start a designing process with different iterations oriented to the creation of that digital competence development proposal.
Regarding the literature review, the first step of the systematic review gave the result of 1.009 papers. The most literature sources were found through Scopus (n = 444) and WoS (n = 379), and a smaller number in Eric (n = 186). The first selection was done on the basis of titles and abstracts, and sources not relevant for the subject under study were eliminated. The remaining articles were located, downloaded, and analyzed for the creation of a solid theoretical framework. Results show the different (a) dimensions which comprise digital competence; (b) teaching strategies and activities used to develop the DC; and (c) levels of DC of university students. According the context analysis, and considering that the DC is the sum of four alphabetizations (multimedia, communicational, technologic and informational), the questionnaires show that most well-perceived alphabetization is the multimedia which owns a punctuation of 18,45 from 25 points; closely followed by the communicational with a punctuation of 18,15 from 25; the next one is the informational with a punctuation of 17,56 from 25; and the last one is the technologic with a punctuation of 16,80 from 25. Also, our research shows that the self-perception of the digital competences is related to the knowledge field of the graduate degree. However, it is not connected with the self or the regulated training developed about it. Besides it is remarkable that there is not a connexion between the availability of digital resources owned by the students and their digital skills. As we can see in the theoretical framework shown previously, DC is an important one necessary for the XXI century that the education system should guarantee and analyze. Nevertheless, those are the first results, and so they will be more defined in the next moths and will be presented in the communication.
Erstad, O. (2010). Educating the digital generation. Nordic Journal of Digital Literacy, 5(01), 56-71. Esteve, F., Adell, J., & Gisbert, M. (2013). El laberinto de las competencias clave y sus implicaciones en la educación del siglo XXI. In II Congreso Internacional multidisciplinar de investigación educativa (CIMIE 2013). European Commission. (2007). Key competences for lifelong learning. European Reference Framework. Ferrari, A. (2012). Digital competence in practice: An analysis of frameworks. Sevilla: European Commission, Joint Research Centre (JRC). Gallardo-Echenique, E., Marqués-Molías, L., & Bullen, M. (2015). Students in higher education: Social and academic uses of digital technology. RUSC. Universities and Knowledge Society Journal, 12(1), 25–37. González-Martínez, J.; Esteve-Mon, F.; Larraz-Rada, V.; Espuny-Vidal, C.; Gisbert-Cervera. M. (2018). INCOTIC 2.0. Una nueva herramienta para la autoevaluación de la competencia digital del alumnado universitario. Profesorado. Revista de Currículum y Formación del Profesorado (in press). Kennedy, G., Dalgarno, B., Bennett,... Chang, R. (2009). Educating the net generation. A handbook of findings for practice and policy. Australia: Australian Learning & Teaching Council. Mishra, P., & Kereluik, K. (2011). What 21st century learning? A review and a synthesis. En SITE Conference 2011. Nashville, Tennessee, USA. Oblinger, D., & Oblinger, J. L. (2005). Educating the net generation (Vol. 264). Educause Washington, DC. OECD. (2005). The definition and selection of key competencies (DeSeCo). Executive summary. Retrieved from http://www.oecd.org/pisa/35070367.pdf Prensky, M. (2001). Digital natives, digital immigrants. On the Horizon, 9(5), 1-6. Tapscott, D. (1998). Growing up digital: The rise of the net generation. New York: McGraw-Hill.
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