06 SES 09, Children, Internet Safety and Media Education
Digital competence (DC) has been integrated as a necessary one of the knowledge for the XXI Century citizens. It is considered one of the key competences for lifelong learning (European Commission, 2004). And it is consolidated as a fundamental learning for European citizenship in the Recommendation of the European Parliament on ‘Key competences for lifelong learning’ (European Commission, 2006).
It was on thas date when DC was incorporated as one of the basic competences in the curriculum of Spanish educational system (LOE, 2006). And it was consolidated as an essential learning for digital citizenship in the education reform from 2013 (LOMCE, 2013).
In addition, the research boom around the skills and knowledge related to digital technologies has also shown their relevance in the current historical framework (Aesaert et al., 2015; Dijk & Deursen, 2014; Lankshear & Knobel, 2008).
In this context, the DigComp project is established as a common European framework in the field of DC (Ferrari, 2013; Vuorikari et al., 2016). In the DigComp framework,
"Digital Competence is the set of knowledge, skills, attitudes, strategies, values and awareness that are required when using ICT and digital media to perform task; solve problems; communicate; manage information; collaborate; create and share content; and build knowledge effectively, efficiently, creatively, autonomously, flexibly, ethically, reflectively for work, leisure, participation, learning, socialising, consuming and empowerment". (Ferrari, 2012, p.30)
This definition of DC is taken as a starting point for the present project. It is taken in a broad sense and addressing the complexity of this new knowledge. This presentation builds on the CDEPI Project (MINECO-EDU-2015-67975-C3-1-P). The general aim of this study is to explore children’s DC in different contexts of inclusion and exclusion, and the factors that contribute to their development (school, family and peer group).
While viewing formal and informal learning in socio-cultural context offers a theoretical lens for examining productive educational uses of new digital media, the concept of habitus (Bourdieu, 1988) enables concretely examine the question of how digital tools, tasks, the self, and others are configured in specific settings to support learning. There are several factors that are affecting the development of these learnings in children and young people. Aesaert et al. (2015) propose an exhaustive and complete model. The model identifies different factors related with ICT Competences (pupil, classroom and school levels). Some of them are related to the use of digital technologies out of school (ICT experience and use), the parental ICT support, or socioeconomic status. Although the model does not expressly take into account the peer group, a key factor in our research. Children’s socioeconomic background is an important factor in granting them access to digital technologies. Therefore it is fundamental that public schools, as a common and democratic space, take advantage of the value of peers’ influence in the development of DC and bridging the inequalities.
In fact, this work focuses on the importance of the peer group to promote the development of children’s DC. It is necessary to research about peers’ role in the learning developed in formal and, specially, informal context, related to new media.
The importance of this study is in relation to increasing the interest on the informal educational contexts produced in recent years. This issue is evidenced by literature which emphasizes this relevance in order to create educational environments that satisfy the social needs. Cuadros-Muñoz (2015) also gives importance to the “learning that is developed beyond the closed space of the educational center and bets to create Environments and Personal Learning Network (PLE and PLN, respectively)” (p.2). Personal Learning Network, both virtual and face-to-face, will represent the social environment, where people learn.
The research problem for the present paper is guided by analytical multiple case study (Stake, 2006). Twelve children from different socioeconomic and cultural status were selected (low, medium and high). They were from 12 to 14 years old and studying in schools which participate in 1 to 1 programs (one laptop per child) in different Spanish communities. The selection was based on a questionnaire and sought for the "maximum profitability" to answer the objectives of this research (Stake, 1998). The accessibility to the socio-familiar context of individuals was taken into account, too. It was used In-depth interviews; participant and non-participant observation of children’s environment and document review were used as main strategies for data collection. Additionally, children’s multimedia diaries, with image and video which show daily digital life, were taken into account. Interviews were carried out not only to children, but also with peer group, teachers and families. Data was analyzed in an inductive and sequential categorization through Atlas.ti software (Glaser & Strauss, 1967).
The analysis made shows that DC is a valued learning by families and school. However, there are differences in the influence according to children’s socioeconomic and cultural background. The socioeconomic status is key appropriation of digital technologies and in the development ICT skills, like research highlights (Aesaert et al., 2015). The results point to child’s PLN being key in the possible development of his/her digital competence; the place of the peer group is especially highlighted. In the cases from low-middle socioeconomic profile, the peer group facilitates the access and use of certain devices. Sometimes these students don’t have resources at home, so their peers can help them with technology. In this way, they help to "provide learning opportunities" (Vekiri, 2010, p.942), making up for possible gaps in the family context. In this sense, the role of peers in mid-low socioeconomic strata matches those of high level. These children have all types of devices at home, but they can´t use them frequently because of the parental rules based on the risk in the use of technologies. Their friendships generate situations with technology (mainly out-school). Regardless of the characteristics of the subjects analyzed, the presence of peer group in their daily lives is evident. In the middle and high level cases, the peer group teaches some current tools and Apps, especially communicative and collaborative tools. In that sense, peers contribute to developing communicative dimension of DC. This learning, which takes place in a certain context, can be transferred to other scenarios, teaching other agents what has been learned within the school and transferring the acquired knowledge, as some research has already shown (Dabbach & Kitsatas, 2012). It is important to note that learnings developed with peers focus in technical and application knowledge and skills, rather than higher-order learning skills.
Aesaert, K., van Braak, J., van Nijlen, D., & Vanderlinde, R. (2015). Primary school pupils’ ICT competences: Extensive model and scale development. Computers & Education, 81, 326–344. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2014.10.021 Cuadros Muñoz, R. (2015). Aprendizaje informal y construcción de PLN vía twitter. Un estudio de caso. Edutec. Revista Electrónica de Tecnología Educativa, (51). Dijk, J. van, & Deursen, A. van. (2014). Digital skills: unlocking the information society (First edition). New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan. European Commission (2004). Key Competences for Lifelong Learning. A European Reference Framework. http://ssu.acs.si/datoteke/TEMA%20MESECA/JUNIJ,%20JULIJ,%20AVGUST/Key%20Competences%20for%20Lifelong%20learning.pdf European Commission. Recommendation of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 December 2006 on Key competences for lifelong learning, (2006/962/CE) § (2006). Ferrari, A. (2012). Digital Competence in Practice: An Analysis of Frameworks. Luxembourg: Publications Office of the European Union. Retrieved from http://ftp.jrc.es/EURdoc/JRC68116.pdf Ferrari, A. (2013). DIGCOMP a framework for developing and understanding digital competence in Europe. Luxembourg: Publications Office of the European Union. Retrieved from http://ftp.jrc.es/EURdoc/JRC83167.pdf Glaser, B. G., & Strauss, A. L. (1967). The Discovery of Grounded Theory: Strategies for Qualitative Research. New Jersey: Aldine de Gruyter. Lankshear, C., & Knobel, M. (Eds.). (2008). Digital Literacies: Concepts, Policies and Practices. New York: Peter Lang. Ley Orgánica 2/2006, de 3 de mayo, de Educación, BOE, No. 106 § (2006). Ley Orgánica 8/2013, de 9 de diciembre, para la mejorar de la calidad educativa, BOE, No. 295 § (2013). Stake, R. E. (1998). Investigación con estudio de casos. Madrid: Morata. Stake, R. E. (2006). Multiple Case Study Analysis. New York: The Guilford Press. Vekiri, I. (2010). Socioeconomic differences in elementary students’ ICT beliefs and out-of school experiences. Computers & Education, 54(4), 941-950. Vuorikari, R., Punie, Y., Carretero, S., & Van den Brande, L. (2016). DigComp 2.0: The Digital Competence Framework for Citizens. Luxembourg: Publications Office of the European Union. Retrieved from http://ftp.jrc.es/EURdoc/JRC83167.pdf
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