It has been an interesting journey, just having finished my digital project for PIDP 3250. Being able to create digital resources for students is a relatively new skill for most instructors, and even though I have experience creating e-learning using a variety of tools, I find I continue to struggle with using the technology. It was comforting to hear my colleagues struggled with some of the same issues – sometimes you think you are the only one. It was great to be able to post a draft of my presentation for my colleagues to review and provide feedback. The feedback was invaluable and provided me with different perspectives and ideas on how to make improvements.
With new models for instruction being adapted, like the Flipped Classroom model, where students view materials on their own time in preparation for learning activities in the classroom, digital media skills are imperative. The New Horizons Report for Higher Education 2014 sites that a lack of these skills by faculty in higher education are a significant challenge in education.
Digital literacy has been deemed critically important to both students and instructors in higher education, but it is widely acknowledged that there is a lack of effective training to ensure that faculty are getting the skills they need to guide students. Another facet of this challenge is in the attitude shift required of instructors; if they are reluctant to embrace new technologies and the promotion of digital literacy, students will not see the importance of these competencies to succeed in the workforce.
So even though the digital projects in PIDP are challenging, the skills being developed are essential because education continues to evolve and the role of the instructor continues to evolve.