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Digital literacy comprises more than computer skills.

It involves discerning what is credible, accurate and reasonable from the plethora of on-line information. In addition to content acquisition on regional relations in Asia and the Pacific, digital literacy will be an important skills base that you develop throughout your studies in this course. Digital literacy means that you are not only able to locate information using digital technology, but it also means you are able to organise, understand, evaluate and analyse the information. Therefore, digital literacy means more than just being able to use a computer; it goes beyond computer skills and incorporates a number of literacy skills, some of which you already have acquired, and others you will develop over the course of the semester.

Sourcing credible information on-line

There is a great deal of information available on the Internet. Some of it is very credible and useful. However, there is a lot of misinformation and poorly researched information on-line too. As your studies progress this semester, you need to think about the types of information you find through your search engine and you need to become skilled at identifying information that is credible and useful, and which links are best avoided. The CARS check list for on-line Source Evaluation is an appropriate means of determining what you need to look for when assessing the credibility of the information coming up in your on-line searches. As you become more skilled at academic on-line searching and locating materials you will be quicker at determining what information is useful and credible. In the meantime, you should apply this check list to the information you find.

Digital literacy skills for the 21st century

As we progress further into the 21st century it is important to realise that digital literacy is an important skills base we will all need to develop. Jobs, training opportunities and even everyday life increasingly require us to have digital literacy skills. In addition, research and academic endeavours also require us to be adept at these skills – particularly as more and more primary and secondary source material are only available as e-books, on-line journals or in on-line databases. Therefore, we need to continue to develop our digital literacy skills and this course will help you to achieve this.

For instance did you know that you can drag and drop an image into the Google Images search box and it will search in the same way as if you had typed some words! Watch the video on how to Google Search with an Image. Try out the Google Images Search with your own image.