Monday, June 16, 2014

Digital Literacy


Living in a world of constant, growing and development in all the areas and especially in the technological area; which is an area that nowadays covers and influences most of the aspects of the human being.  We as teachers, we cannot be blind on that issue. If we have not taken it into consideration, it is time to wake up and give us the opportunity to know more about the different uses and strategies that we can implement throughout the technology either inside or outside(real or virtual) of our classrooms.
Not matter if we perceive it or not, there is a new generation that has risen that is called the electronically and digital generation. Most of the messages and the communication is provided and done through the digital things. The question is are we as   teachers ready to empower our students with knowledge about this digital area? Do we know all the benefits and advantages of use the technology as a tool to promote the understanding or the learning of a language?
If we have an electronically generation, do we know what are their expectations? Do we know what are their motivations and needs about learning a language? Do we know how useful could be the ICT strategies?  Or maybe there is a gap that we have to take into consideration. Sometimes, to teach people especially kids, we can face different challenges such as keep them motivated. If we do not use dynamic and interacted strategies in our education way applied to this generation. Maybe, we would not get the completed attention of the students and as consequences we are going to be left behind in this new era.
As a matter of fact, we need to be conscious of the era that we are living that was marked from the creation of the internet and so on. We have to consider the tools that were created and spanned through the internet such as: web pages, podcast, wikis, second life elements and others artifices that were created to promote certain and different kind of information.
In order to be conscious of the importance’s of the uses of the technological element into the education system the UNESCO has written and delimited the ICT competences for teachers.  This important organization highlighted the importance of the implementation of the technology in the classrooms, the benefits for the students and their different programs that are taught through the ICT strategies.
In Venezuela, there has been an awakening regardless those topics. In many universities such as: UCV, ULA, UPEL and UCLA among others. Professors have noticed the necessity of used the technologies and their tools as a way of learning. And in much University the internet services are provided for free, professor send homework and sometime assets through internet. In this case, we have seen that Universities have placed the technology in a very important place. Even in some primary schools the used of laptops as a part of the classes is compulsory. But even though we have been conscious about, there is a still a group of teachers that they do not how important and meaningful could be the use of digital programs in our classroom and there is a universe that we do know yet. We have just seen part of the stars but not the rest of tools that are beyond those stars. It is necessary that we go beyond the previous knowledge that we have and in that way we will be able to be the teachers of this present and future generation as UNESCO, teachers capable and prepared to provide technology-supported learning opportunities for our students; having the technology as a tool of an integral professional repertoire.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The role of ICT in higher education for the 21st century: ICT as a change agent for education

The role of ICT in higher education for the 21st century: ICT as
a change agent for education
Ron Oliver
Edith Cowan University, Perth, Western Australia
Abstract: Information and communication technologies (ICT) have become
commonplace entities in all aspects of life. Across the past twenty years the use of
ICT has fundamentally changed the practices and procedures of nearly all forms of
endeavour within business and governance. Within education, ICT has begun to have
a presence but the impact has not been as extensive as in other fields. Education is a
very socially oriented activity and quality education has traditionally been associated
with strong teachers having high degrees of personal contact with learners. The use
of ICT in education lends itself to more student-centred learning settings and often
this creates some tensions for some teachers and students. But with the world moving
rapidly into digital media and information, the role of ICT in education is becoming
more and more important and this importance will continue to grow and develop in
the 21st century. This paper highlights the various impacts of ICT on contemporary
higher education and explores potential future developments. The paper argues the
role of ICT in transforming teaching and learning and seeks to explore how this will
impact on the way programs will be offered and delivered in the universities and
colleges of the future.
Keywords: Online learning, constructivism, higher education
Information and communication technology (ICT) is a force that has changed many aspects of the
way we live. If one was to compare such fields as medicine, tourism, travel, business, law,
banking, engineering and architecture, the impact of ICT across the past two or three decades has
been enormous. The way these fields operate today is vastly different from the ways they
operated in the past. But when one looks at education, there seems to have been an uncanny lack
of influence and far less change than other fields have experienced. A number of people have
attempted to explore this lack of activity and influence (eg.Soloway and Prior, 1996; Collis,
There have been a number of factors impeding the wholesale uptake of ICT in education across
all sectors. These have included such factors as a lack of funding to support the purchase of the
technology, a lack of training among established teaching practitioners, a lack of motivation and
need among teachers to adopt ICT as teaching tools (Starr, 2001). But in recent times, factors
have emerged which have strengthened and encouraged moves to adopt ICTs into classrooms and
learning settings. These have included a growing need to explore efficiencies in terms of