16 SES 09 C JS, Literacy and Digitalisation in Education
Joint Paper Session NW 16 and NW 31
ICT has transformed social literacy practices throughout society (Ala-Mutka et al., 2009; Gillen, 2014; Snyder, 2001) especially, in reading and writing events of primary education children (Burnett & Merchant, 2017; Davies & Merchant, 2009; Lankshear & Knobel, 2011; 2013). Currently, communication is related to the development of digital competence. This competence is a set of knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary for personal development in different contexts. The digital competence consists of four types of literacy elements: ICT, information, media (Buckingham, 2007) and digital literacies (Ala-Mutka, 2011; Ferrari, 2012).
In particular, our research focuses on ICT and information literacy as the most representative skills of the digital competence in school (Beetham, McGill, & Littlejohn, 2009; Newman, 2008). On the one hand, information literacy is defined as the ability to search for, select, analyse, organise and communicate information (American Library Association, 1989). On the other hand, ICT literacy is described as the set of skills and knowledge related to the ICT industry (Beetham, McGill & Littlejohn, 2009).
Literacies develop outside and inside the school and have a dynamic character (Barton & Lee, 2013; Lillis, 2001). The incorporation of the digital competence into the school curriculum has turned its development into a practice of institutional literacy. However, the digital competence has a relevant role in other social domains where vernacular literacy practices play an important role in informal learning (Meyers, Erickson & Small, 2013). The development of the digital competence in various social domains (school, home, church, neighbourhood, etc.) presents a variety of literacies (Davies & Merchant, 2009) whose level of development is unknown in primary education in Spain. In the same way, research has not addressed the study of the interaction between digital and information literacy developed in the different domains.
The process of school literacy in the Spanish environment has presented a new challenge in the last two decades (New London Group, 1996; Gee, 2000). The social and cultural changes that have taken place in the last decade have transformed both the children’s profile and their learning needs in the school context. (Gillen, 2014). The use of computers, tablets and mobile phones in the family and school environments means that educational programmes and teaching-learning processes in the school have aroused great interest in the field of educational research (Lankshear & Knobel, 2013). The need to reflect on the literacy that children develop inside and outside the school responds to their new needs in diverse social contexts (Burnett & Merchant, 2017).
In the light of the digital competence described above, we pose the following research questions inside and outside school, specifically in Primary Education:
- What are the characteristics of children’s digital competence at school?
- What are the children’s literacy practices and which practices do they use to develop the digital competence at school?
- Do the children’s literacy practices incorporate ICT and information literacies developed in informal and formal learning contexts?
The sample that participated in our study was composed of Primary Education students (8-12 years old) enrolled in public/State and private schools of the province of Seville. In this way, a total of 1834 students from the second and third cycle of Primary Education were invited to participate, who come to represent 2.10% of the total population, with a sampling error of 2.14%. Thus, we had the collaboration of 1624 students who represent 88.55% of the invited sample. In the data analysis, 1540 responses were considered, excluding 4.58% of the participants (84 cases). The information collection was completed through a self-report on the literacy of Primary Education students completed in situ: https://es.surveymonkey.com/r/YB8FK52. The self-report is composed of a total of 40 items that are reduced to two dimensions: Information competence and Digital competence. The items were assessed with a Likert scale between 0 (Never) and 5 (Always) through which the students showed their preferences and opinions. Table 1 shows the study of the psychometric characteristics of the self-report and its reliability measured by the Cronbach's Alpha yields values between 0.76 (informational competence) and 0.80 (digital competence). In addition, the performance of a multidimensional non-metric analysis allows verifying an optimal validity of the instrument guaranteeing the adequacy of the items considered in it (adjustment measures close to 1 and the mismatch measures to 0). The study was completed by different data analyses that gave answers to the different objectives of this work. At first, a descriptive study was carried out based on univariate statistics (mean, standard deviation and coefficient of variation) that allowed describing the preferences and opinions of students in relation to items related to the digital and informational competences. Secondly, in order to reduce the complexity of the information, a Principal Component Analysis was used for categorical data (hereinafter CAPTCA). This analysis allowed us to identify two components that were named: Monomodal Literacy Component and Multimodal Literacy Component. With the interest of further deepening in the CAPTCA analysis, each of the following groups was taken as a classification variable: ISC and ownership, competencies evaluated in the General Diagnostic Tests, curricular preferences, as well as age, sex, and the course. In this sense, quantifications were calculated and joint graphs of components and groups were designed.
Data obtained exemplifies the development of complex literacy in PE that takes place inside and outside the school (Bearne, 2005; Pahl, 2002). Students incorporate diverse resources in their practices that differ depending on the domain in which the reading or written production of texts takes place. It is possible to differentiate between two types of literacy practices: one in which the printed reading and the composition of texts in "paper" is preponderant; and another one that incorporates digital support in the reading and writing processes, where the virtual environment takes on special importance. This study identified two main components, the Monomodal Literacy (MnL) and Multimodal Literacy (MtL). The MnL collects those practices that are carried out in the school and that use "paper" as a means of reading and writing production and in which the students and the teacher participate. In contrast, MtL refers to a type of literacy that incorporates "day to day" students´ life, takes place outside school and involves families, friends, neighbours, etc. MtL explains a higher percentage of variance observed in students´ reading and writing practices. These two components reflect existing gap between school literacy (MtL) and "other literacies" (MnL). Each of these literacies is associated with an ISE, a title, a school performance, school interests and a different age. MnL is associated with students with high ISE, enrolled in private schools, with a high score in the Communicative Competence, Social Science and Foreign Language tests, they are interested in all the subjects of the school curriculum except for Physical Education and are between 8-10 years old. The MtL is associated with students with low and low ISE enrolled in public schools, with low scores in the CC, SS and FL tests and higher performance in Mathematical Reasoning, with less interest in the school subjects and with ages between 10-13 years old.
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