Credit points


Campus offering

No unit offerings are currently available for this unit



Unit rationale, description and aim

In the 21st century, digital media is part of our everyday lives. Digital literacy can be defined as the essential skills required to live, learn and participate in modern society. Digital literacy allows us to effectively process information and communicate in a rapidly changing and increasingly digital landscape. This unit familiarises students with core competencies required for digital literacy as well as exploring issues surrounding ethics, privacy and risk in the 21st century digital world.  

In this unit students are introduced to the wide range of competencies required for digital literacy. According to the Australian Government’s Core Skills for Work Developmental Framework, these competencies include confidently using digitally based technologies and systems; connecting with others; accessing, organising, and presenting information; as well as managing online risk and identity. This unit focuses on developing these skills so that students can successfully learn and work in a digital society.  

The aim of the unit is to identify students’ current digital skillset and work with them to develop competencies required for university life. This includes the understanding and use of Microsoft office, online interactions within LEO, and library research methods. Students will also be introduced to current issues and debates surrounding digital media and appropriate ethical practices.  

Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - Use Microsoft office suite, WordPress, library search functions and LEO, including Turnitin, for study and assessment purposes (GA 10) 

LO2 - Use appropriate language to effectively communicate ideas, concepts and issues using a variety of web-based tools, for different purposes (GA7, GA9, GA10) 

LO3 - Identify risks and personal privacy issues related to internet profiles and digital footprints (GA3, GA4, GA8, GA10) 

LO4 - Apply a critical digital literacies perspective regarding the reliability of sources, digital safety and digital citizenship (GA3, GA4, GA8). 

Graduate attributes

GA3 - apply ethical perspectives in informed decision making

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

GA7 - work both autonomously and collaboratively 

GA8 - locate, organise, analyse, synthesise and evaluate information 

GA9 - demonstrate effective communication in oral and written English language and visual media 

GA10 - utilise information and communication and other relevant technologies effectively.


Topics will include: 

  • Needs analysis: students will participate in a short survey to identify their current skill level and the core competencies that need further development.  
  • Understanding the digital context. Digital natives and digital immigrants (Prenski, 2001). 
  • Using digital tools in formal and informal learning environments.  
  • Finding, evaluating and disseminating information.  
  • Evaluating the reliability of sources.  
  • Creating Infographics, digital maps and multimodal texts. 
  • Developing and presenting digital information (using WordPress, Prezi, Padlet, PowerPoint etc.).  
  • Critical analysis of Social Media: Students will be introduced to different platforms. They will examine the different functions, advantages and problems associated with these platforms.  
  • Engaging with university social networks (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook etc).  
  • Ethics and privacy issues in digital communication.  

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

Mode for International Students: Attendance on campus: 5 hours per week 

Mode for Domestic Students: Multi-mode: attendance on campus: 3 hours per week plus 2 hours online learning.  


Duration: 10-week Term 


This unit is comprised of weekly workshops built on the educational philosophy of situated learning (Gee, 2004). The focus is on learning within real or simulated contexts. Situated learning fosters authentic literacy because it replicates practices that occur in our everyday lives. The unit begins with a focus on core digital competencies before considering the overarching ethical issues that frame individual practice. Student learning will be scaffolded in exploring and developing practical skills regarding technologies, apps and website online, while the sociological aspects will be workshopped on campus.  

Assessment strategy and rationale

The assessment tasks are designed to prepare students for the kinds of digital activities they will encounter in their studies and broader university life. The first assessment, Vlog 1, encourages students to consider their current digital media practices as well as developing core competencies in media presentation. The second assessment, Vlog 2, allows a development of these skills after formative feedback, and includes an evaluative component. The second vlog also develops students’ understanding of appropriate resources for academic research. The third assessment, the presentation, encourages students to develop a critical approach to digital literacy skills, it helps students to situate their own use of digital media within a wider context of considerations regarding ethical and responsible digital media uses.  

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Student Vlog 1 

Students create a Vlog on WordPress that is shared with the class. The Vlog can incorporate video, images, hyperlinks and written text.  


Vlog 1 is a ‘day in the life’ description of the student’s use of technology and social media.  


(Week 3) 




LO1, LO2,  

GA8, GA9, GA10  

 Student Vlog 2 

Students create a Vlog on WordPress that is shared with the class. The Vlog can incorporate video, images, hyperlinks and written text.  


Students choose and evaluate the reliability of an internet source.  

Students should demonstrate knowledge and learning based on feedback from Vlog 1. Assessment includes a peer review component.  


(Week 6) 



LO1, LO2, LO4 

GA3, GA4,GA7 GA8, GA9, GA10 


Students identify a current internet safety issue (e.g. identity theft, catfishing, fake news, cyberbullying) and develop a safety awareness campaign for their peers. They chose an appropriate digital medium to present their findings (e.g. PowerPoint, infographics, digital maps, multimodel texts).  



LO2, LO3, LO4 

GA3, GA4, GA7, GA8, GA9, GA10 

Representative texts and references

Goggin, G. (2011). Global Mobile Media. London, U.K: Routledge. 

Hartley, J. (2009). The Uses of Digital Literacy. Brisbane, Queensland: University of Queensland Press. 

Rodney H., Jones, C., & Hafner, A. (2012). Understanding Digital Literacies. London, UK: Routledge.  

Poster, M. (2006). Information Please: Culture and Politics in the Age of Digital Machines. Durham, U.K: Duke University Press. 

Prenski, M. (2010). Teaching Digital Natives: Partnering for Real Learning. Thousand Oaks, Cal :

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