Digital literacy and informal learning environments: An introduction

Eric M. Meyers, Ingrid Erickson, Ruth V. Small

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

228 Scopus citations


New technologies and developments in media are transforming the way that individuals, groups and societies communicate, learn, work and govern. This new socio-technical reality requires participants to possess not only skills and abilities related to the use of technological tools, but also knowledge regarding the norms and practices of appropriate usage. To be 'digitally literate' in this way encompasses issues of cognitive authority, safety and privacy, creative, ethical, and responsible use and reuse of digital media, among other topics. A lack of digital literacy increasingly implicates one's full potential of being a competent student, an empowered employee or an engaged citizen. Digital literacy is often considered a school-based competency, but it is introduced and developed in informal learning contexts such as libraries, museums, social groups, affinity spaces online, not to mention the home environment. This article recognizes and connects the ways and places we might conceptualize and realize an expanded view of digital literacy that fits today's changing reality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)355-367
Number of pages13
JournalLearning, Media and Technology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2013


  • digital literacy
  • digital media
  • informal learning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Media Technology


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