Open Access

Higher Education and the Knowledge Society. Information and Digital Competencies

International Journal of Educational Technology in Higher Education20107:7020006

https://doi.org/10.7238/rusc.v7i2.977

Received: 15 February 2010

Accepted: 15 March 2010

Published: 15 July 2010

Abstract

This article contains a series of concepts connected with the new challenges and commitments for higher education institutions in the knowledge society. These challenges not only imply significant changes to teaching models, but also the incorporation of information and communication technologies (ICTs). In today’s world, where the need for lifelong learning has been accepted and new technologies have taken on a significant role, higher education has no option but to reconsider its objectives in the light of growing societal demands and new sociocultural trends. The changes demanded for higher education are based on a social need to make it scientifically and economically beneficial. In this context, the incorporation of new formats like the one involving the concept of competency, for example, has taken a firm hold. On the basis of references contributed by the DeSeCo project, this article defines the concept of competency as a referential element for certain changes that are taking place in higher education. It takes an in-depth look into the idea of training in information competencies, the meaning of which is analysed in this article. These are considered to be an advance on IT competencies (instrumental), since they are linked to knowledge construction processes of greater complexity.

Keywords

higher education knowledge society digital competencies information competencies information and communication technologies (ICTs)