WHAT IS A DIGITAL WORLD?
The 21st century has experienced sustained exponential growth in the use of digital technologies. The advances in technology have created the world where it is possible to take a unit without being physically present in the classroom, work for a school in Perth and yet live in Melbourne, where reflection on learning is possible through blogging by using tools such as WordPress and Weebly and Tumblr. The days when people’s daily life revolve just around them are gone. Hence,welcome to the digital where all interactions are powered by digital technologies which have transpired the world into a global village without boundaries. The International Communication union (2009) described the digital world as the world that makes the best possible use of digital technologies, a world driven by intense broadband development and increasing mobile numbers. Living in a digital world involves the manifestation of technology in daily activities, from shopping to socialisation, paying bills, in the education sector, and in careers. Therefore to survive and live safely in such a world has become an essential task.
In other to survive in a digital world, it is imperative that the children develop the skills needed to survive in a digital world. The modern age work requires technology skills; hence there is a need for the students to be imbibed with the digital technological skills needed for this century (Crockett, 2011). Moreover, there is need to ensure that our identities in a digital world are safe (Bouquet, 2014). In other words, there is need to ensure that our identities cannot be hacked and used elsewhere. For example, using our bank details to pay a bill, or using our accounts by imposters.
There is a need to protect the children on and off the web against cyberbullying and also ensure that they do not have access to inadequate or wrong contents (Clifford,2012). This can be achieved by adopting technological skills in our curriculum and classrooms through digital pedagogy. According to Howell (2012) Digital pedagogy involves the study of how to teach using digital technologies. There is a need for teachers to acquire the skills needed to teach students whose exposure and interaction in a digital world has placed them to become digital expectants.
Nevertheless, the Australian Government recognises the importance of acquiring the digital literacy needed for survival in a digital world by strengthening the Australian Curriculum with greater emphasis placed on Science, technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. Moreover, the Australian Curriculum and Assessment Reporting Authority (ACARA) (2016) general capabilities recognised the information and communication technology ability among its seven general capabilities. On the December 2015, the Australian Government released the National Innovation and Science Agenda shared below, which provided funds for inspiring all Australians in Digital literacy.
To survive in a digital world, there is a need to be technologically skilled and literate. The expectations of the students who are digitally expectant need to be meet by the teachers by imbibing digital technological skills in teaching and learning through digital pedagogy.