This started as a reflective journal for Level 3 qualification practitioners course in Digital Literacy. It has since evolved into my confessions and rants. To those of you who visit, I hope you find it useful; life's not always black and white - MG
Thursday, 21 July 2016
I completed Level 3 Digital Literacy Practitioners
Qualification. It took about 28 weeks to
complete the course. I haven’t received my official certificate as yet – but I
know it’s coming. This now means that I can officially teach the subject.
Woo-hoo. This suggests I know what I am doing, doesn’t it? Well, for the most
part, I do.
However, the Task for both Level 1 and Level 2 Essential
Skills Digital Literacy (ESDL) that must be delivered is really tough, and I am
not sure how, in a “controlled” learning environment, learners can
realistically, meet the criteria.
There is so much information that must be
covered. It is a hard subject that must cover the 6 Strands of Digital
Literacy; involve collaborative learning and presenting of information; and a
very technical one-to-one discussion about specific elements of the subject.
Bear in mind that my learners are “work based”. The departments I look after are Business and
Hospitality. Some of my learners are pretty up on their computer skills (I’m
not just talking about MS Office programs); but for the most part, they really
My learners range from ages 19 years on up to 60+. They are in employment, on apprenticeships,
and have very busy lives. The Essential
Skills (Communications, Application of Number and Digital Literacy) is a necessary
part of the framework of their education/qualification. So, regardless of what they
are studying, they have to take these “essential skills” and they have to pass
are several areas which are marked against a matrix. The areas that are part of
the communications requirement
are the same areas that learners worked on before
the new Task & Test (T&T): Reading, Summary, Planning, Discussion,
Writing, Research, and Presentation - if you are taking Level 2. Here’s a
problem with the current Task as it is presented: if a learner does not pass
every element of the task, they must take the entire task (a NEW one) over
For example; they pass the reading and written aspects of the task –
they did brilliantly; perfect grammar, sentence structure, spelling, text style
and punctuation. BUT, they completely bombed the discussion part; they didn’t
even bother to participate in the group discussion. They fail. The entire task; not just the discussion. So, they are given a new task to do over again (rather deflating isn't it?)
Some people are better at listening; it doesn’t mean they
are not participating in the discussion. What about those learners who really
struggle with standing in front of a group and presenting information? If I had
30 weeks to teach these learners, I could build their confidence and skills and
help them (at least) to pass the task requirement.
But, I don't have 30 weeks. These are work-based learners. They have to
complete their ES before starting their NVQ or ILM (main framework); which
means, I only have about five weeks with them….once a week (five lessons). It
works – but only if I am teaching to the task and not identifying areas which are
in need of underpinning - because we just don't have the time. I am not really
teaching, am I? I am just shoving them through for qualification sake.
not the kind of "teaching" I signed up for.
How about you? Are you teaching Task & Test? How do you feel about "teaching to the task" or "teaching to the exams"? I would love to hear about your experience.
Thanking you in advance....
For resources in teaching the Communications Task and preparing for the Test: Task and Test