One really positive thing to come out of the current situation is how creative and adaptable students and staff have been in using digital tools to keep the University running virtually. They’ve been backed up by the awesome support from IS and other digital support teams like Technology Enhanced Learning and faculty Online Course Developers. Lecturers and students have quickly adapted to teaching and learning online, using tools like Webex and Google Meet. Support staff have transitioned to online working using video conferencing along with messaging tools like Google Chat and Slack. It’s also been impressive to see how social media has been used to keep staff and students connected, the UoP Sport Facebook group being a great example. Although setup to share fitness tips, it does much more than that in keeping people connected.
It would be great to keep this momentum going once things get back to normal. If this has shown anything it’s that the workplace is quickly changing and along with changes brought by Industry/Education 4.0 everyone is going to need the skills to be creative and adaptable as technology changes quicker than ever.
One of the tools we have available to help with this is the Digital Capability Discovery Tool. Also, one of the really hard things to get across is that digital capabilities are not basic literacy skills. All of us will have areas of digital expertise, but there will be gaps in our capability, whether in information, data or media literacy, digital creation or presentation, or even digital well-being. The framework the tool is based on is designed to help students and staff develop their digital capabilities to cope with how things are changing.
Give it a go, you might be quite surprised about the results. Available for both students and staff, when you sign up you’ll be asked if you are a new or continuing student or if you are academic or professional services staff and then taken through a questionnaire. It’s not a test of your knowledge, it’s a self assessment of your confidence in the different areas of digital capability. It will take a bit of thought for you to decide on honest answers and be around 45 minutes to complete. It is personal to you, the University doesn’t see individual results, only aggregated ones so we can compare ourselves in the sector and possibly see where resources can be emphasised.
As a result of this effort you’ll get a tailored comprehensive report on your capabilities with links to great resources. Check out the LinkedIn Learning landing page linkedinlearning.port.ac.uk where there are learning paths with resources mapped to the different areas of the framework.
Lastly, if you have any groups of students or staff that you support and who might be interested, we have a presentation that can be dusted off to explain all of this, which we’d be happy to deliver. If you find it useful, please recommend it to colleagues, or you may use it to inform your PDR process, teaching staff could use it with students perhaps to help with a ‘baseline’ of digital capability.. However you feel it might be useful please feel free to get in touch with me or firstname.lastname@example.org