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Monday, August 30, 2010

Digital Literacy - the missing framework 



December 2005 is a bit 'yesterday' in terms of the rapid pace of debate in new literacies, but I just came across this European project which was tasked to produce a framework for digital literacy. The project is described here but the project website seems to have vanished. Allan Martin argues here and elsewhere that digital literacy is 'the ability to succeed in encounters with the electronic infrastructures and tools'. So we are essentially talking about a model of ICT competence - not quite what I understand by a 'literacy' in a strict or a even a metaphorical sense. The definition derives from the EC's observation that 'The ability to use ICT and the Internet becomes a new form of literacy: 'digital literacy'. Digital literacy is fast becoming a prerequisite for creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship and without it citizens can neither participate fully in society nor acquire the skills and knowledge necessary to live in the 21st century.' quoted in the above paper by Martin. There's no reference to critique, refusal or a participation gap here, nor anything about the understandings and developments necessary to establish this literacy in the first place. But maybe this is all in the framework, wherever that is.

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