Digital Literacies are increasingly important in today’s world. Those who are not digitally literate would find it difficult to operate in a digital world [1]. But, what exactly are digital literacies [2] and can they be effectively combined with a tertiary level English course for second language speakers? The research study examines a general education course titles ‘Digital Literacies and Language’ which has been run at a tertiary institution in Hong Kong. In the course, digital literacy is defined as the ability to consume, think critically about, and create multimodal digital assets such as images, podcasts and videos. This subject aims to improve students’ ability to create, modify, describe, analyse and persuade using digital assets, and therefore involves literacy in both computer skills and language skills, and higher-order thinking skills. The aims of this research study are to critically examines the course and consider to what extent that they have been fulfilled, and also whether all the aspects being covered in the course are useful for students. The course as currently designed places an emphasis on computer skills, for example using software to edit audio or create a video. This research study questions the value of these skills for non-experts, especially when there are new tools available which can do a similar function automatically. Instead, the author believes that rather than specific software skills being covered in the course, students should be given the skills to navigate the online world to find the tools that they need to complete different tasks. This in itself is a form of digital literacy.

Author: Adam Forrester

Published in: Canada International Conference on Education, 2023

  • Date of Conference: 26-28 June, 2023
  • DOI: 10.20533/CICE.2023.0015
  • Electronic ISBN: 978-1-913572-58-7
  • Conference Location: Residence and Conference Centre, Toronto, Canada