Enhancing the Digital Literacy Experience of Teachers to Bolster Learning in the 21st Century
The interconnected constructs of education in the 21st century cannot be divorced from teacher training. This article reports on the digital literacy experience of teachers amidst the worldwide recommendations of using distance learning and open educational applications to address education during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown. Altogether, 840 participants were purposively selected from urban, semi-urban, and rural areas in South Africa; 217 completed an online qualitative survey, while 23 took part in three virtual focus-group discussions. Van Dijk’s Resources and Appropriation Theory guided the study. Data analysis involved descriptive statistics and thematic analysis. The findings revealed the gaps between what is expected of teachers and their own realities, besides teachers’ eagerness to be involved in digital literacy. Recommendations include the need to continually align the teacher education curriculum with the country’s skills need and to provide teachers with the required support. Associated directions for further research are suggested.