e-Learning for Educators
Course Information

Digital Citizenship for Inactive Educators
Course Description

The Internet is an exciting, tempting, treacherous place. It is a place where one wrong turn or bad decision can have life-long ramifications. But, if handled wisely, it can be also be a bridge to lifelong learning and a wealth of information.
Digital citizenship, the norms of appropriate, responsible behavior with regard to technology use, will be the focus of this course. The course content will address the nine elements of digital literacy as published by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) and authored by Mike Ribble and Gerald Bailey.
The nine elements of digital citizenship are:
1. Digital Access
2. Digital Commerce
3. Digital Communication
4. Digital Etiquette
5. Digital Health and Wellness
6. Digital Law
7. Digital Literacy
8. Digital Rights and Responsibilities
9. Digital Security

Course Syllabus

By the end of this course, participants will:

  • use appropriate strategies to safely and effectively use technology to communicate with others,
  • understand how to be respectful when communicating online through the use of appropriate netiquette,
  • understand the importance of following policies and standards specific to digital communication and netiquette,
  • explore features of browsers and search engines,
  • refine search terminologies and techniques to improve results,
  • evaluate the accuracy, relevance, and appropriateness of electronic sources,
  • understand how to use online material ethically,
  • be introduced to distance learning,
  • recognize practices that must be implemented to maintain digital security and digital safety,
  • review procedures for reporting inappropriate use of technology,
  • understand digital laws related to responsibility for actions and deeds, including but not limited to the following:
    • ethical and legal implications of using technology,
    • online threats (spam, viruses, Trojans),
    • plagiarism,
    • copyright infringement,
    • identity theft, and
    • hacking.
  • explore why everyone should be concerned with overuse of technology,
  • review injuries that can occur as a result of digital technology,
  • investigate the psychological effects of cyberbullying,
  • develop an awareness of the level of access, or lack thereof, for our population,
  • recognize the variety of ways that students use technology, and
  • be able to follow safe practices while engaging in digital commerce and financial transactions online.
Course Organization

This course includes several different activity components, all of which are described below. During each session, you will participate in a unique collection of these activity components, depending on the particular focus of that session.

When you see this icon you will be reading relevant articles, resources, and instructional materials that will help inform your online course development process.

When you see this icon you will be completing activity-based curriculum and inputting various components of the course content into your course project.

When you see this icon you will be using the online discussion board to share ideas, resources, and thoughtful conversation with your fellow course participants and facilitator.

This professional development course is designed for non-teaching West Virginia public school employees and/or for individuals who hold or have held West Virginia teacher certification but who are not currently hired in a permanent teaching position. Course participants must have access to a computer and a reliable Internet connection, be able to access the WVLearns course platform with a login and password, and send and receive email  during the duration of this course. Although not a requirement, high speed Internet access definitely enhances the online experience. Participants should be proficient with using email, browsing the Internet and navigating through computer files. 

Microsoft Word is required in order to read, edit and/or create documents for this course. If you have a WVDE k12.wv.us email account, you have access to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneDrive, etc. as part of Microsoft Office 365. You should see your school/county technology support person if you need help in using/installing Word and/or other Office applications. 

If you do not have a k12.wv.us email account, Word must be acquired through other means.  One way to get access to Word Online at no charge is by Creating a Microsoft Outlook Account with Access to FREE Office Online

Format and Requirements

This workshop is divided into six one-week sessions which each include readings, activities, and an online discussion among workshop participants. The time necessary to complete each session is estimated to be 6.5 to 7 hours.

The outline for the workshop is as follows:

Session One Digital Communication, Etiquette, Rights and Responsibilities
Session Two Digital Literacy
Session Three Digital Security
Session Four Digital Law
Session Five Digital Health and Wellness
Session Six Digital Access and Commerce

Session One: Digital Communication, Etiquette, Rights and Responsibilities

With the emergence of new technologies, we have the ability to interact globally as never before. With these interactions, we need to know our rights and responsibilities as good digital citizens. This session defines communication, etiquette, and rights and responsibilities in a digital society. This session will address the following guiding questions:

  • What are your responsibilities while using technology to communicate with others?
  • How can you create and maintain a positive digital footprint?
  • What are your rights as a user of digital technologies?

Session Two: Digital Literacy

Few aspects of daily life are outside the realm of technology. Modern society has grown dependent upon instant access to unlimited, and often overwhelming, amounts of information. We, as Digital Citizens, must develop the skills to safely search for online sources that will provide accurate, relevant, and appropriate information and then be able to use that information in an ethical manner. This session addresses:

  • How can we identify the best resources to provide the information needed from the thousands of options available?
  • What technologies can we employ that will help develop the skills necessary to be responsible, productive digital citizens?
  • How can we use technology to access educational opportunities that are available and accessible today?

Session Three: Digital Security

The increased use of technology by all members of society creates challenges for digital citizens. People using technology must be proactive to protect themselves. This includes the physical technology tools as well as the virtual interface for usernames, passwords, and personal data. Personal safety and network security questions to be addressed during this session are:

  • How may digital citizens prevent damage to technology tools?
  • What practices should be initiated to maintain digital security?
  • What can be done to protect oneself on social networks?

Session Four: Digital Law

Good digital citizens must recognize the legal rights and restrictions governing technology use with regard to digital law, online threats, plagiarism, copyright infringement, alternatives to copyrighted works, identity theft and hacking. This session asks participants to focus on the following issues:

  • How are we, as digital citizens, demonstrating ethical and legal use of technology?
  • How are we safeguarding our rights and the rights of children when using technology?
  • How should we, while using digital technologies, be held accountable for the manner in which we use them?

Session Five: Digital Health and Wellness

The world today is dependent on digital technology. This session provides an awareness of the physical and psychological dangers associated with the use, overuse and abuse of various electronic devices and platforms. The following questions are addressed in this session:

  • What physical dangers accompany the use of technology?
  • What psychological dangers accompany the use of technology?

Session Six: Digital Access and Commerce

Many American adolescents have been raised with technology. However digital access is not universally available, and among technology users, the level of competence varies widely. Many young users spend hours on gaming and other activities such as downloading music and apps, but are they adequately educated in how to use digital commerce safely for vital real-world activities? This session addresses the following questions:

  • What impact does the access to technology, or lack thereof, have upon you, your family, and others' personal lives and educational opportunities?
  • What safeguards are to be observed when engaging in digital commerce?

The following criteria will be used for evaluating successful participation in and completion of this workshop.

1. Orientation Quiz:  During the Orientation Session, participants will complete an Orientation Quiz. The quiz may be taken as many times as necessary in order to obtain the expected 90% accuracy. 

2. Discussion Board Postings: Participants will be evaluated weekly on the frequency and quality of their participation in the discussion forum.  Participants are required to post a minimum of one substantial original posting each session in response to the discussion prompt for that session by Sunday evening. Participants are to respond thoughtfully to a minimum of two colleagues' original postings each session by Monday evening. They are to read all original messages by course participants and enough additional responses to make a total of 50% of the messages posted for that session by Tuesday evening. Postings will be evaluated on their relevance, demonstrated understanding of course concepts, examples cited and overall quality

Read the Discussion Guidelines and the Checklist for Evaluating Discussion Postings. Your facilitator will follow these guidelines and the checklist when evaluating successful participation in the course Discussions. You may also be asked to peer review other participants' projects in the Discussions using peer-review. The Rubric Review Help Guide will assist you to complete this successfully.

3. Readings and Activities: Participants are expected to complete the required course readings and activities as posted in each of the session assignment pages. Optional readings may also be completed, but are not mandatory.

4. Final Product: Participants will design and produce course projects weekly. The course projects will be addressed during all course sessions. During each session, the completed course project templates for that session will be uploaded to the course dropbox. Each week participants will also place their completed project template into the the course Dropbox and into the Discussion Forum for peer-review. The following course project templates and rubrics are used in this course:
Session One: Session One Course ProjectSession One Project Rubric and Session One Peer-Review Rubric;
Session Two: Session Two Course ProjectSession Two Project Rubric and Session Two Peer-Review Rubric
Session Three: Session Three Course ProjectSession Three Project Rubric and Session Three Peer-Review Rubric
Session Four: Session Four Course ProjectSession Four Project Rubric and Session Four Peer-Review Rubric
Session Five: Session Five Course ProjectSession Five Project Rubric and Session Five Peer-Review Rubric
Session Six: Session Six Course ProjectSession Six Project Rubric and Session Six Peer-Review Rubric.
Directions for the Culminating Course Project are present in Session Six. The Culminating Course Project will be evaluated using the Culminating Course Project Rubric. Please download and save to your computer each Course Project template with a descriptive filename that includes your last name (ProjectSession1_Smith, for example).

5. Copyright: Copyright guidelines are to be observed throughout the course project and all course activities. All work associated with the course project is to be the original work of the course participant. Fair Use does not apply to the course project.

6. Grades: All grades in the course gradebook must be a "C" for successful course completion. A grade of "C" indicates that all work has been completed and the work meets the expectations for that assignment.

The grade scheme for this course will be:

C = all work meets the guidelines provided
I = the work submitted is incomplete and/or does not meet the guidelines provided
N = no work has been submitted

7. Pre and Post Workshop Surveys: Participants are expected to complete both surveys. The Orientation Survey is to be completed by Sunday during the Orientation Session and the Final Survey is to be completed by Sunday during Session Six.


Certificate of Completion

Upon successful completion of this course, Digital Citizenship for Inactive Educators, participants will receive a Certificate of Completion documenting successful completion of the course requirements. Certificates are distributed to each qualifying participant by attachment to the the Session Six course dropbox shortly after the completion of the course.

Graduate Credit Information

Participants in this course who possess a Bachelor's degree are eligible to receive non-degree graduate credits from either West Virginia University, Marshall University, West Virginia State University, or Concord University. Credits will be awarded at the end of the semester in which the course occurs. Additional information is available on the course News/Welcome Page.

Content and Technology Standards

This workshop, Digital Citizenship for Inactive Educators, will help participants meet the ISTE EStandards for Teachers at https://www.iste.org/docs/pdfs/20-14_ISTE_Standards-T_PDF.pdf.

In addition, participants will identify specific WV Technology and Computer Science Standards (Policy 2520.14).

About this Course

For permission from Mike Ribble, author, to Reference the Nine Elements of Digital Citizenship in Schools published by ISTE throughout course content (click here.)

This workshop was developed by and for the West Virginia Department of Education (http://wvde.state.wv.us).

Original design (before format modifications) by EdTech Leaders Online (http://www.edtechleaders.org), a project of Education Development Center, Inc, © 2007.  All rights reserved.