I’ve just been reading this article, yes I know it came out in January but I’m only now catching up on my reading.
There was a lot going on in this article but the two statements below caught my attention,
- “…How, for example, is the public good of disinterested scholarship
to co-exist with the contemporary focus on education for ‘employability’ and a so called ‘seismic shift’ in pedagogy predicated on digital literacy (Gillen and Barton
- “…In fact the focus on individual competences, at the expense of cultural practices, is in line with policies that preconceived higher education in terms of its occupational, economic and ‘private’ purposes…and from the ethos of debate and principled scepticism, towards a more contingent culture of participation in digitally mediated professional, occupational and lifelong learning communities…”.
May be this is the problem we are dealing with. Is Digital Literacy relegated to a lower level of importance because it is perceived as a series of individual competences rather than a change in cultural practices? Individual competences are supposed to be very important to future employment but from the feedback from employers what they actually want is someone with the competences and the cultural change. Employers want people who are flexible workers, people who change their practice to accommodate the need of the business. I believe that it is this flexibility that Digital Literacy helps students to learn. To feel comfortable and confident with constant change.
This is not to say that “disinterested scholarship” inevitably disappears as part of the cultural shift to “lifelong learning communities”. Society does need a balance between creativity and disinterested scholarship – a balance between a leap of faith and sceptical agnosticism. Business cannot exist from day-to-day without the rational decision-making but it would not exist at all without the “non-rational” creative drive of entrepreneurs.
I could go on but it’s five o’clock and I’m hungry. Tell me what you think about Digital Literacy answering all the needs mention in the above quotes.