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Digital technologies are essential in all people’s everyday life. We can see this technology has become a principal driver of economic growth worldwide. It is also a catalyst for change and innovation within established patterns of economic activity.
All education systems at all levels always try to respond to support economic activity. The educational system is also built to develop the individual and to prepare people for life. Digital literacy provides individuals with resources and opportunities, which can engage people to use the new technologies. The engagement is about computing literacy and numeracy. Digital literate people are more employable.
Digital literacy in TVET
Digital literacy is crucial in technical and vocational education and training (TVET). The role of information technologies (ICT) in the TVET pedagogy, training delivery, teachers training, curriculum, and labs is needed to meet the current era challenges.
A recently published systematic literature review about TVET teacher professional competency for Industry 4.0 asked two questions:
- What is the construct of TVET teacher professional competencies that aligned with the Industrial Revolution 4.0 era?
- What is the sub-construct of TVET teacher professional competencies that aligned with the Industrial Revolution 4.0 era?
The study pointed out that non-technical competency is essential in TVET, like technical competence. Technical competence is specific competence for the stream. Therefore, non-technical competence like personal attributes, motive, and physical is vital in the TVET teacher profession for the industry 4.0 era. In general, advanced technologies do not replace humans for improving productivity; instead, there must be close human-technology collaboration .
Another Systematic Literature Review made an evaluation of the innovation of ICT in TVET education. The study aimed to identify and present gaps in ICT-based technology innovations, research, and applications used in TVET training. The study determined that ICT technologies and application dispersion into TVET training cycle system components are particularly low. The study suggests that TVET training should focus on IoT, Robotics, Data Science, Artificial intelligence, cloud computing, and similar technology .
The TVET system reformation requires a continuous improvement in job-oriented soft skills acquisition. The education should also focus on future employment towards economic growth. Scholars and academia have recognised the knowledge economy to enhance creativity, provide independence, and strengthen communicative skills, knowledge, and understanding. It is thus imperative to encourage the implementation of a research strategy for policy development in TVET in intermediate and emergent economies.
References Dayangku Suraya Awang Jafar et al: TVET Teacher Professional Competency Framework in Industry 4.0 Era, Universal Journal of Educational Research 8(5): 1969-1979, 2020  Rana Hammad Hassan et al: ICT Enabled TVET Education: A Systematic Literature Review, IEEE Access (Volume: 9) pp 81624 – 81650, 03 June 2021  Khilji, Nasrullah K. and Stephen A. Roberts (TKN Research Network), Soft skills acquisition for the knowledge economy: a research strategy for policy development in technical and vocational education and training (TVET) in intermediate and emergent economies, Conference Paper · January 2021 (ResearchGate)
Lucubrate Magazine November 2021
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