Tuesday, November 16th, 2010 | education
Digital literacy not only equips learners for future jobs – it also helps them to secure jobs. We are faced with staggering unemployment statistics; anything that can contribute towards finding work needs serious consideration.
The need for digital literacy is not restricted to white collar workers, such as office workers and professional people. Blue collar workers also require digital literacy skills today. In the past these workers performed manual tasks and high literacy skills were not viewed as all that important. Technology has changed all of this. The tools of blue collar workers are now digital ones – this means that they must be digitally literate.
Proof of digital literacy – passing a test or having a certificate – is often a requirement for securing a job. Companies spend huge amounts of money on technology training – it makes economic sense for them to employ people who already have digital literacy skills. You will put your learners in an advantageous position if you equip them with these skills.
Even finding a job requires digital literacy. Many jobs are advertised on the internet and we must learn how to find, read, interpret and respond to these advertisements. A person who is dependent solely on paper based recruitment methods is losing out.
Learners – and teachers too! – need digital skills to present themselves well to prospective employers. Technology can be used to prepare a neat, readable CV. Many employers are using social networks to find background information about job applicants – they look at your Facebook page, your Tweets, and other places where they can discover who you are.
Some social networks – like Linked in – allow you to present yourself professionally and expose you to employment opportunities.
Anyone who participates in digital social networks leaves an indelible digital trail. Everything you write, any comment you make, any picture you post is there for the world to see. A person who recruits staff simply needs to Google your name and a flood of information appears about you.
Learners must know how to present themselves in the digital space and how to protect themselves. What they put on the internet can work for them – or against them!
Digital literacy is no longer optional for job seekers – it is essential.
For more technology tips for teachers click here.