Digital Identities and Digital Security
Unpacking the world of digital identities and how to be digitally secure and protected within it.
(Image Sourced from Christian Lundkvist & Stephen Wilson, Unpacking digital identity, n.d)
What does your digital identity consist of?
Every individual that associates with digital devices creates a digital identity or footprint the moment they begin interacting within the digital world. This identity is characterized by your personal information and data gathered by websites and companies as a result of your online presence. Are you aware “that every time you log onto a website you leave a mark” (Digital tattoo) and what you do can be seen and found by everyone? Furthermore, this personal information becomes permanent and can be copied and passed on by anyone (Common Sense Media: Digital Footprint Intro , 2009).
This collaboration of information that formulates a digital identity may include an individual’s photos, date of birth, address, purchase history, online searches and even medical history (Techopedia, n.d).
So how do you protect your digital identity in the world of teaching?
As an individual who is educating 21st century learners, it is pivotal that your digital footprint is managed so that your professional and personal life are kept separate. Furthermore, having knowledge on how to manage a digital identity is productive in assisting students in understanding how to protect their own digital identities and how to be digitally secure online. There are several methods that can be utilised to protect your digital footprint as a Teacher or educator that are inclusive of:
- Hiding your social networks by setting them to private
- Create a VPN (Virtual Private Network) that encrypts your online presence (Teach Hub, n.d)
- Google yourself, this is to assess what information about you is currently available online
- Create differing accounts for both professional and personal use with personal accounts under a fake name e.g. use of middle name as last name
- Falls. A, May 2017, Unpacking the digital world, (Image), retrieved from:
- Techopedia, Digital Identity (n.d), retrieved from:
- Digital Tattoo, Removing myself from the internet (n.d), retrieved from:
- Web20Classroom Blog, (n.d), Teachers take care of your digital footprint, retrieved from:
Participation and the Digital Divide
Click here for my audio on the digital divide!
- Australian Digital Inclusion, 2017, retrieved from:
- Tustin. R, Bridging the digital divide in education, retrieved from:
- Bentley. P, July 2014, Lack of affordable broadband creating digital divide, ABC Radio Melbourne, retrieved from:
- IT and the digital divide in India, (Image), retrieved from:
Click here for my video on digital fluency!
- Spencer K, October 2015, What is digital fluency?, Retrieved from:
- Knowles. J, 2018, How to help your students build digital fluency, retrieved from:
- The rise of the digital classroom, (image), retrieved from:
- Anticipate devices ready for home use, (image) retrieved from:
- Cox. J, Pros and cons of technology in the classroom, (image), retrieved from:
The ever expanding digital world brings with it an extensive selection of tools, opportunities and a modern alternative to communication that is being utilised daily on a global basis. With this newly formed digital culture comes a contemporary and advanced way of educating 21st century learners. It is now becoming increasingly acknowledged that with this constantly evolving digital age students will need to be digitally fluent in order to be “empowered within a technologically sophisticated society” (Chalich. Z, 2015). In saying this, I have recognised that it is our responsibility as educators of the future generations to assist and encourage students to develop these technological skills and assets to further equip them with the ability to communicate effectively with the use of digital tools.
To do this, we ourselves are required to be capable of utilising these digital devices effectively. In my personal experience with being exposed to new digital tools such as Prezi, Audacity and even through creating this blog through WordPress, I have come across many challenges and difficulties that I have only overcome through the assistance of a competent mentor. Much alike Vygotsky’s theory of learning from the guidance of a more skilled member (O’Donnell et.al, 2016, pg.115), i believe that a digitally fluent educator is required to develop students technological skills through the implementation and guidance in utilising different digital tools. Incorporating an expansive range of technological devices and tools within the classroom can encourage essential skills to develop inclusive of “creativity, communication, collaboration, critical thinking, problem solving” (Chalich. Z, 2015) and technological proficiency. Undoubtedly, technology aids in the advancement of skills as throughout my own use of these digital tools I often had to tap into my problem solving capabilities in order to solve issues such as importing my audacity speech into my blog.
Overall, the integration of technology into education across all areas of learning is paramount in an individual developing the necessary skills to succeed as digital devices are constantly evolving into an integral role in a 21st century student’s life.
- Chalich. Z, 2015, Integrating technology with classroom pedagogy – Accelerate student learning, retrieved from:
- O’Donnell. A, Dobozy. E, Bartlett. B, Nagel.M, Spooner-Lane. R, & Youssef-Shalala. A, Reeve. J, & Smith. J.K. (2016) Educational psychology (2nd ed.). Milton, QLD: Wiley & Sons.