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 Massive Open Online Courses Offer Free Way to Explore Digital Literacies

Now that summer is underway, it’s a good time to explore ways to prepare for the next school year.  The San Diego County Office of Education and the California Department of Education in concert with the Technical Statewide Education Technology Service (TechSETS) are offering two massive open online courses (MOOCs) for the professional development of educators and other stakeholders interested in strengthening their digital literacy skills.

MOOCs are online learning programs that suppor​t participation of learners across the planet. ​That is, as long they are at least 18-years of age, ANYONE can enroll in the courses and participate!  SDCOE’s Digital Literacies MOOC is an innovative way to provide professional development for educators across California to meet the growing demand of skill sets required to educate students using digital media and networks, at no cost to schools.

“We know that technology is an integral part of preparing students for college and career in the 21st century.  But we can't just put hardware and software and computing devices into classrooms without preparing educators to use them,” said San Diego County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Randy Ward.  “Our teachers and administrators have to strengthen their digital information fluency skills so that they may, in turn, transfer these skills to their students. That's why courses like this are so important."

Digital Literacies 1 explores:
  • Web-based and other electronic tools
  • The grammar of the Internet
  • Ways for using digital information ethically, efficiently, and effectively
  • Advanced online search literacy tactics
  • How to use electronic devices more efficiently
  • Frameworks for digital education literacy
  • Various digital literacy curricula for use with students and other stakeholders

Digital Literacies 2 explores:
  • Cybersafety and digital citizenship
  • The use of Creative Commons license
  • Understanding copyright law and the ‘Fair Use’ clause
  • The use of Web 2.0 tools
  • Ways to apply Google Applications for EDU
  • Using mobile technologies for teaching and learning
  • Techniques for developing non-linear presentations
  • Methods for using Quick Response (QR) codes in teaching and learning
  • The use of digital cameras
  • Developing blogs and websites
  • Producing podcasts

Digital Literacies 1 will commence July 8, 2013.  Digital Literacies 2 will being in mid-to-late September 2013.  Both courses are free.  Upon successful completion, learners will receive a certificate of completion and a digital badge.

Two optional units of university credit from the San Diego State University are available for each course.  However, learners enrolled in the for-credit courses must pay a fee for each course.   Limited seats are available for the for-credit courses (60 seats).  Enrollment is on a first-come, first-served basis.