In a previous blog post we looked at Digital Capability – what it is and why it’s important. The work that Government and organisations such as Jisc have carried out highlights the fact that digital capabilities are relevant to all areas of university business. Supporting the development of digital capabilities is vital in meeting the vision, ambitions and expectations of all HE institutions, and it is ingrained in our University and Education Strategies. In order for students and staff to evolve with changing technology, to live and work in a digital society and to meet new challenges, competencies in a number of areas need to be developed.
Digital Capabilities Framework
Although the term ‘digital capabilities’ includes the notion of being proficient in IT skills, it is far broader than this. It includes being able to manage information, recognise ‘fake news’, evaluate sources, present ideas in a variety of different digital formats, analyse information, and manage one’s online identity and safety. All these areas are explained in the Digital Capabilities Framework.
Digital Discovery Tool
The Jisc Digital Discovery Tool – which is now available for use – is designed to help all staff realise their digital potential. (A student discovery tool will be available soon.) The tool asks for department and role, and there should be a category to suit all members of staff – everyone needs to be aware of their digital capability. After all, at the very least staff need to use digital tools to book leave, check payslips, take part in the University community, and communicate with other staff and students.
The Discovery Tool asks quiz-style questions in a non-judgemental way, and provides realistic examples. The process of answering the questions should make staff aware of their digital confidence and provide ideas for new skills to develop.
Once they have completed the form, staff get a comprehensive profile of their digital competencies. The report includes practical suggestions for ‘next steps’ with links to great resources. Individual data is not shared, and the tool is not designed to monitor individuals, but potentially the results could be used in a number of ways:
- Departments could use overall data to assess which areas of digital capability need developing.
- Individuals, by becoming more aware of digital capabilities, could use the feedback for personal development and CPD.
- The report could be used to inform the PDR process.
Completing the Discovery Tool
- Login to the DIgital Discovery Tool.
- When you log in for the first time you need to sign up.
- Create a password, the code needed is dcap17!
- Select ‘University of Portsmouth’ as the organisation.
- Choose a Department and then an appropriate role.
- Answer the questionnaire.
Once the Discovery Tool has been completed a report is generated and can be downloaded as a pdf. If any further help or consultancy is required please contact any of the following;