What is a Digital World?
We live in a world where we communicate extensively with people we have never met, we create digital artefacts which we can share with anyone who is connected to the internet and we are able to search and find information on almost any subject we wish to learn about. This is often referred to as the digital world. The way teachers address student participation in the digital world is important as it effects how they teach and how the students learn. In Australia, parents, students and other stake holders in education expect students to participate in the digital world for multiple reasons including to ensure life-long learning and to be digitally prepared for future technologies (Howell, 2014). For this to happen it is important to consider the effect a digital world has on teaching practices and how students learn.
With the dawn of the digital world the role of the teacher and way students learn has changed. Area Education Agency 267 (2012) explains how students collaborate online, focus on creation of digital artefacts, address real life problems and have become more self-directed. Students no longer view the teacher as a fountain of information. Howell agrees, learning will be more student-centered and with the help of technology “the classroom will no longer be limited to a physical space” (2014, p. 63). Instead the teacher becomes an enabler and challenger who supports life-long learning rather than from the text learning. Firstly, teachers can empower student by providing them with the tools they need for learning (Area Education Agency 267, 2012). By encountering multiple tools the students’ digital fluency will be developed. Secondly, teachers become challengers by teaching students to be critical evaluators of information they encounter on the internet (Howell, 2014). By providing multiple current tools and teaching students to be critical evaluators the teacher is supporting the students’ life-long learning. Students need this support to become critical participants in the digital world which will continue to be a part of their world through their lives in future studies, occupations and social life.
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Area Education Agency 267 [AEA267Iowa]. (2012, December 17). Education in a digital world [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JfA2Th1HlEE<
Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL). (2012, May 7). 21st Century education [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nA1Aqp0sPQo
Howell, J. (2014). Teaching with ICT: Digital pedagogies for collaboration and creativity. South Melbourne, Australia: Oxford University Press.
Kneale, J. (2015). What is a digital world? [Image]. Retrieved from https://tagul.com/show/zjf7l3iwvks6/What%20is%20a%20digital%20world