I was lucky enough to present recently at ALDinHE this year (1st April 2015) our Digital Literacy project at Southampton Solent University. (http://learning.londonmet.ac.uk/epacks/digital-literacies/)
It was well received and I would like to thank everyone present.
The audience at the end asked me a few questions and I hopefully responded with the correct and with any luck productive answers.
However once sat down, the lady to my left mentioned that her IT department do not recommend their students to use cloud based storage. This she said was due to the issue of security. So the use of Dropbox and Google Drive for example it seems are not encouraged at her institution.
I was disappointed that this question was not asked when I was summing up, as I feel this is a crucial element of Digital Literacies and I neglected to pass on this information to my audience. Even though I am an advocate of new technologies and emerging cloud based storage solutions I am also aware of the security issues.
Indeed, Clued Up! Our Digital literacy project is hopefully a balanced resource and highlights in many cases the pros and cons of using the said new technologies.
I was so excited by my own presentation and the fact that it gathered such keen interest from the audience that I promoted the apps and online resources but neglected to mention the cautionary tales that should accompany such a presentation.
When running our workshops and introductory sessions we are always clear to suggest to students that uploading their course work or other important documentation needs careful consideration, as all important and private materials should be backed up on solid devices and kept safe.
We don’t really know if anyone accesses the materials stored in a cloud system or why they might want to but it is clear they can. Students must be aware of this.
So I am grateful to my neighbour at the presentation, who’s name I sadly neglected to obtain for pointing this out. I only wished I’d remembered to include these issues in my presentation, as Digital Literacy is not just about the positive aspects of new technologies but also the pitfalls.
Chris O'Reilly is an Educational Technologist and freelance advisor for online educational learning material and development.