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Nation to promote digital literacy

By Zhao Yimeng | China Daily | Updated: 2024-02-23 09:13
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China aims to improve digital literacy and skills across the country, contributing to the overall enhancement of people's competence in the digital age.

The goals include establishing a more robust system for cultivating digital literacy, comprehensively advancing digital infrastructure, and narrowing the digital divide between groups, according to a guideline released on Wednesday by the Cyberspace Administration of China and three other departments.

Cultivating highly skilled and versatile digital talent is one of the six major tasks stipulated in the guideline, which involves multiple groups including teachers and students, officials and public servants, as well as rural talent, the guideline said.

Teachers with digital literacy and the ability to interact and collaborate with technology are essential to the digital transformation of education, but challenges remain in enhancing their digital literacy, experts said.

"Many teachers have limited time and resources to learn and apply new technologies in the classroom. They may find it challenging to explore new digital tools," said Liu Jun, rector of City University of Macau.

Liu said some teachers prefer traditional teaching methods while inadequate technological infrastructure makes it difficult for some to integrate digital tools into their teaching.

In addition, teachers may rely on self learning or informal peer support due to insufficient professional opportunities for enhancing their digital literacy, Liu said during a forum at the 2024 World Digital Education Conference in Shanghai last month.

In late 2022, the Ministry of Education released industry standards for the digital literacy of teachers, aiming to enhance teachers' awareness and capabilities in using digital technology to innovate teaching activities.

Xiong Zhang, dean of the School of Information Technology and Management at the University of International Business and Economics in Beijing, said teachers should improve their digital literacy in four aspects: information awareness, computational thinking, mathematical learning and social responsibility.

Teachers are expected to demonstrate the active use of digital platforms and how to properly introduce digital resources for students, he said at the same conference.

Apart from digital talent, the guideline also highlights accelerating efforts to bridge the digital divide, such as building a barrier-free digital environment and providing inclusive public services.

It said China will support the growth of the digital economy, accelerating the digital transformation of enterprises and expanding the demand for online consumption.

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