ACU trials cybersafety training for pre-service teachers

Monday, 23 November 2009

23 November 2009: The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has trialled a new cybersafety professional development program for pre-service teachers at Australian Catholic University (ACU).

The program is designed to raise awareness of a range of cybersafety issues and help develop appropriate strategies to manage these issues.

The program was trialled at the Universitys Strathfield and Canberra campuses earlier this year, and involved more than 650 pre-service teachers, academics, educators and industry stakeholders.

Toni Noble, Senior Lecturer in Education at ACUs Strathfield Campus, was approached by the ACMA to trial the cybersafety program on behalf of all Australian universities.

"This is an important and prestigious project for ACUs profile in the education and broader community," Toni said. "The pre-service training will help to prepare students to meet a variety of challenges as beginning teachers."

The program involved a series of presentations that covered key cybersafety topics including:

  • the profile of a modern school student;
  • the skills required to develop an effective cybercitizen;
  • the legal responsibilities of educators and schools to mitigate risk and potential liability; and
  • key emerging issues such as cyber bullying and sexting.

"Teachers, including trainee teachers, have a key role to play in cybersafety education," Toni said.  "The program provides information about how educators can use the skills and resources to teach students to become good cybercitizens and stay safe online."

The Cybersafety Outreach Pre-Service Teacher Program is part of the Federal Government's ongoing commitment to cybersafety in Australia.

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The new program for Pre-Service Teachers is expected to roll out nationally in 2010.