A Definition Of Web Literacy (And How Students Can Benefit)

September 09, 2015
By Educator Innovator

Chris Lawrence, VP of Learning at Mozilla, discusses why web literacy should be added as “the fourth R” to the three cornerstones of education—reading, writing, and arithmetic—to prepare learners with the skills necessary for the digital world.

“In the 21st century, web literacy unlocks the same opportunities as reading and writing. The student who is able to create online has a limitless array of tools. The student who is able to collaborate with peers on the Web can bring fresh, new perspectives to their work. And the student who can distinguish reliable information from the unreliable will always be at an advantage.

When students are web literate, information becomes more accessible, and learning becomes more dynamic. Web literacy is empowering. And for that reason, it can’t be ignored. But too often, students encounter a “read-only” Web — one where content is consumed, but not created. So, how do we fix that? First, by teaching students how to read, write and participate online in the best way possible: through hands-on, experiential learning. The Web doesn’t lend itself to textbook and blackboard-style teaching. Students are best prepared to achieve web literacy when they’re actively typing, hyperlinking and sharing as they go. (When you think about it, it’s a familiar concept — would you teach writing without first equipping students with pen and paper?)”

By Chris Lawrence

Interested in finding out more? Read the full article at te@chthought.