REFLECTIONS ON DELIVERING ONLINE DIGITAL MEDIA COURSES: LEARNING FROM THE LEARNERS
Here we describe the redevelopment of two online courses aimed at enhancing staff digital literacy: Ten Days of Twitter (ARU10Dot), which introduces the use of Twitter for academic purposes; and 5 Minutes of Digital Literacy (5MoDL), which supports ARU’s Digital Literacy Framework (DLF).
Now in its eighth delivery, ARU10DoT (Webster & Warnes, 2017) introduces university staff to the use of Twitter for academic purposes, and attracts roughly 35 participants each time. Participants subscribe to a WordPress blog via email, and each day for ten (working) days, receive an emailed blog post covering an aspect of Twitter and an associated task. The reading and tasks are designed so that participants can complete everything in ten minutes. 2017 saw the introduction of a Digital Badge for successful completion of the tasks. This almost doubled page views on the blog, and some previous participants repeated the course simply to acquire the badge. Content and delivery is adapted each time using feedback from a Satisfaction and Impact survey.
5 Minutes of Digital Literacy (5MoDL) (Williams & George, 2017) is based on the 10DoT format and delivery. The course is designed to support ARU’s DLF (Kerrigan & Evangelinos, 2015), which defines levels of competency (i.e. Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced). It addresses five key areas in five-minute segments on the five days of the first full working week of the month, for five months. In addition to a few ARU-specific items, topics include software (i.e. Blogging, Feedly, LinkedIn, Lynda.com, Reddit, Skype), and Top Tips (i.e. mobile phone security, battery consumption, working in the digital age, maintaining your digital identity).
5MoDL was created in response to the lessons learned from its predecessor, 5 Days of Digital Literacy (5DoDL), (Williams & George, 2016). The name change was based on feedback suggesting that participants were confused about the program duration. 5DoDL had 390 participants, and the blog posts were viewed 19,954 times and generated 3,621 comments (plus 2,975 tweets). Like 10DoT, successful participants were awarded digital badges, 813 of which were issued, which have been viewed and/or shared 4,761 times to date. Many valuable lessons were learned while running #5DoDL. The large number of participants amplified the smallest of design flaws, and the shortcomings of the platforms that were used to deliver the course. In order to address the scale of interest, unlike 5DoDL, which was delivered via a WordPress blog, 5MoDL is delivered via ARU’s LMS, Canvas, which restricts access to ARU staff. Instructions for daily tasks have been simplified and the language is much more precise to avoid any misunderstandings by participants.
Both courses attracted high levels of satisfaction, and most participants report changes to their practice as a direct consequence of them.
 Kerrigan, M. and Evangelinos, G., 2015. Digital Literacy Framework (V. 6). Anglia Ruskin University. [Online] Available at: https://vle.anglia.ac.uk/sites/LTA/Course%20Documents/Digital_Literacy/Digital%20Literacy%20Definitions%20v6.pdf
 Webster, H. and Warnes, M., 2017. #ARU10DoT Ten Days of Twitter, [Online] Available at: https://aru10dot.wordpress.com/
 Williams, J. and George, J., 2016. 5 Days of Digital Literacy, [Online] Available at: https://5daysofdigitalliteracy.com/
 Williams, J. and George, J., 2017. 5 Minutes of Digital Literacy, [Online] Available at: https://canvas.anglia.ac.uk/courses/2224