What is Digital Education?
Digital Education refers to both the delivery of education through digital technologies and also the education of those who teach to use digital tools effectively.
The subject of digital skills within UCC is a complex one. Consider, for example, some of the common IT tools and platforms used daily by UCC staff and students - MS Outlook, Word, PowerPoint, Agresso, DMIS, Terminal 4, SharePoint, QuickMinutes, Google Drive, One Drive, Canvas, Panopto, MS Teams, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, to name just a few of those currently in operation. The breadth of purpose of these tools is staggering as is the level of comfort people have with their operation.
Part of the vision of the Office of Vice President for Learning and Teaching is ‘of a university where effective and innovative teaching and learning approaches are fostered and supported’. Supporting staff to increase their digital skills is a key strategy in achieving this vision.
Similar challenges exist with undergraduate students, who often do not get the opportunity to increase their digital skills during their formal schooling. As digital natives, it is often assumed they bring with them to college a proficiency in the use of technology. Unfortunately, research consistently shows that the digital skills they have do not often match the demands placed upon them for studying at third level.
It is also incumbent on a modern third level institute to view education in a wider global context and to equip its graduates to continue learning as they progress into work and find their way in the world. Empowering them with the base digital and learning skills to continue this journey must form part of UCC’s vision for developing Independent Thinkers.