Digital Proficiencies

Alert by Zach Bogart from the Noun Project

From May 22 - July 17, 2021
the Digital Proficiencies Modules are in development.

We recognize that students are more prepared to launch their careers when they have the ability to demonstrate agile thinking and active learning with digital skills and tools. The digital proficiencies below were compiled from various evidence-based sources* and are recognized professionally as skills for success.

Digital Proficiencies – The Six Areas and Their Skills

  1. Create using digital-age textual formats, including audiovisual formats, and employ design elements that engage users
    • Examples include videos, audio recordings, podcasts, animations, infographics, and other means of digital storytelling
  2. Interpret and critique visual presentations of information
  3. Work with a range of digital publishing or social media tools and identify audience needs
    • Examples include blogs, wikis, (Applications: Knight Lab suite, WordPress, Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, Flickr, Adobe Spark, Canva)
  4. Identify ethical dimensions of intercultural communication and engage in audience analysis

Videos (A.1: Screen Recording, A.3: Overview of Spark and Canva)

  1. Employ a range of digital collaboration tools
    • Examples include file-sharing, collaborative editing and annotation, discussion forums, blogs, online chats, web-conferencing
    • Examples of asynchronous collaboration include conversations in an online discussion forum, collaborative annotation in Hypothesis, comments in word processing systems, and digital peer review
    • Examples of synchronous collaboration include chats via Google Hangouts/FaceTime/Skype, Facebook Messenger or Google Chat, collaborating in Google Workspace (Docs, Slides, Sheets, Forms, etc) simultaneously with other users
  2. Co-create meaning and value user-generated content (UGC) or user-created content (UCC)
      • Examples include wiki-building, social media, iReport, blogs, and Flickr
  3. Evaluate contributions made by others
      • Examples include digital peer review and project management

Videos (B.1: Google Workspace Overview)

  1. Use digital tools and technology-enabled-methodologies
    • Examples include textual analysis, topic modeling, network analysis, GIS, creation of nonlinear narratives and arguments, collection of data, computer programming
  2. Employ software to create, collect, analyze, and manipulate data
    • Examples include Excel, MySQL, SPSS, and ARCGIS
  3. Use formulas, functions, or coded instructions to analyze data
    • Examples include Excel, MySQL, SPSS, ARCGIS, and R Studio
  4. Demonstrate agile learning
    • Ability to learn continuously and apply new knowledge even in unfamiliar situations

Videos (C1/C2: Teaching Data Sets from The ISTE Standards | C3: Graphing in Excel | C3:Graphing in Python)

  1. Assess one’s own digital skills
  2. Develop strategies for improving digital skills
  3. Troubleshoot problems
    • Develop a method of strategies for diagnosing and solving common technology- related problems (check system requirements, clear cookies, open a new browser, restart system)
  4. Use creative, iterative, and goal-oriented design processes for creating, testing, and refining new ideas

ISTE Blog “Reflective Observation: Essential to Digital Citizenship” Rogers-Whitehead, ©2019

  1. Assess one’s information needs and develop critical understandings of how search engines, common indexing schemes, algorithms work, how to use them effectively, and recognize their limitations 
  2. Credit others’ creative work and ideas through attribution and copyright conventions appropriate for digital media
  3. Use metadata for organization and management and to find and analyze information about digital objects
  4. Recognize both traditional and emerging ways knowledge is created and disseminated for general audiences and for specific disciplinary ones

Videos (E.2: Finding Images OnlineE.4: Creative Commons Licensing)

  1. Identify appropriate etiquette in digital spaces
  2. Analyze digital policies to make informed choices
  3. Develop and practice strategies for protecting data, identify sensitive information, and secure digital devices and accounts
  4. Understand commodification of personal information
  5. Identify and assess the physical, emotional, and psychological effects of technology, and develop strategies to mitigate negative effects

Videos (F1: The Five Rules of Digital Citizenship, F3: PBS NOVA Labs)

Click here to read Marc Prensky’s research on Digital Natives vs Digital Immigrants ©2001

What is your Digital Proficiency Strength?

Take the quiz below to find out.

Can’t see the quiz above? Click here to open it in a new tab.

Digital Communication

Online Collaboration



Information Literacy


Have Questions?

Please email

*These proficiencies were developed with support from Bryn Mawr College (2018) and International Society of Technology in Education ( (2018)

All icons provided by The Noun Project