Learning in a digital age/LiDA approved course specification

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To enable students to develop and apply digital and learning literacies critical for learning success in tertiary education for the 21st century

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this course students will be able to:

  1. Apply digital tools effectively to demonstrate learning literacies including advanced search strategies to identify and select relevant open access resources to research, produce, analyse and present information for tertiary education purposes.
  2. Develop a positive digital online identity in support of learning commensurate with good practice for privacy, security and interpersonal communications.
  3. Develop and effectively apply knowledge of copyright, open licensing and license remix compatibility utilising open education practices to support tertiary learning in a global digital context.
  4. Develop critical media literacy skills and use multimodal communication to express outputs of learning effectively in a digital online environment.

Indicative content

The LidA course will implement a discovery pedagogy where learners are guided to search, identify, evaluate, select and share appropriate resources in achieving the learning outcomes in pursuit of their own learning interests . Indicative topic areas:

  • Digital and academic skills for online learning
  • Digital citizenship
  • Open education, copyright and open licensing in a digital world
  • Critical media literacies and associated digital skills.


Assessment activity Weighting Learning outcomes Assessment grading scheme Completion requirements
Assignment 25% 1 Criterion referenced assessment (percentage) Must pass with minimum of 50%
Assignment 25% 2 Criterion referenced assessment (percentage) Must pass with minimum of 50%
Assignment 25% 3 Criterion referenced assessment (percentage) Must pass with minimum of 50%
Assignment 25% 4 Criterion referenced assessment (percentage) Must pass with minimum of 50%


No prescribed resources. Learners will be guided by the open online course materials in sourcing relevant open access materials to achieve the learning outcomes.


The micro-course objectives are not required for the course approval documentation at Otago polytechnic but are summarised here to guide the development.

Micro-course structure

The Learning in a Digital Age course is designed and structured according to four micro open online courses, approximating 40 notional learning hours each.

The micro-course structure is designed to facilitate flexible learning options and international articulation for credit transfer in different jurisdictions around the world through the OERu. The micro-course format will also enable Otago Polytechnic to award micro-credential options.

The course will also be offered as a full-tuition option for resident students of the Graduate Diploma of Tertiary Education at Otago Polytechnic. Further, it will be available through the OERu international network to be assessed by Otago Polytechnic.

Learners are required to successfully complete the designated summative assessment for each micro course before the 15 credits for the full course can be transcripted.

Micro 1: Digital skills for online learning

  • Demonstrate digital skills for establishing and maintaining a personal learning environment on the open web.
  • Develop an understanding of the breadth of digital and learning literacies for the 21st century.
  • Apply effective search strategies for both search engines and repositories to find relevant open access resources.
  • Develop skills for judging the legitimacy of open resources and applying frameworks for selecting appropriate resources to support learning.
  • Develop and apply learning and academic literacies including note-taking, annotated bibliographies, paraphrasing and reflective learning skills.
  • Demonstrate online skills for planning and writing an essay including how to prepare a bibliography and cite sources online for academic purposes and corresponding tools for maintaining a bibliography.

Micro 2: Digital citizenship

  • Describe the dimensions of digital citizenship and e-Literacy appropriate for work and learning in the 21st century and understand the rights and responsibilities of a digital citizen.
  • Contrast and compare online communities to offline communities.
  • Identify. explore and evaluate a range of digital media, technologies and communities appropriate for supporting learning
  • Develop an understanding of privacy and security in an online world.
  • Understand the pitfalls and potential of social media including for example, the risks and benefits of using “free” services, catfishing, identity theft, internet trolling and cyberbullying
  • Develop skills and constructive solutions to online interpersonal dilemmas that exemplify ethical behaviour
  • Develop a positive digital identity and digital footprint for learning.

Micro 3 - Open education, copyright and open licensing in a digital world

  • Define open education and related concepts of Open Educational Resources (OER), Open Access (OA) and Open Licensing in relation to academic study. Demonstrate an understanding of the ethical and sustainability challenges associated with universal and affordable access to higher education around the world.
  • Apply knowledge of copyright and the associated public domain within the context of global access to digital information and strategies to avoid breach of copyright in a digital world.
  • Apply knowledge of open licensing for creative works and open source software including remix compatibility among different types of open licenses.
  • Develop and apply semantic markup skills for different technologies.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of academic integrity in relation to copyright, plagiarism and fabrication.

Micro 4 - Critical media literacies and associated digital skills

  • Contrast and compare definitions of media literacy and new media literacy in the context of the history of mass media and newer forms of social media and citizen journalism.
  • Demonstrate critical media literacy skills to access, analyse, evaluate and create media in different forms information being conveyed
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how the medium and publisher influences the message regardless of the form. Assess the authority and reliability of a range of mass media including how social media influences behaviour and attitudes in contemporary society.
  • Apply skills in using digital media for visual and multi-modal presentation to support learning.