Learning hybrid by doing hybrid: Teaching critical digital skills in a safe learning space

Abstract

Social Work Management education today requires students to gain critical digital competences in order to prepare them for a professional work context, that is characterized, both, by an increasingly hybrid administrative work environment and social space settings that blend physical and virtual arenas of interaction. Most current educational social work programs, however, often lack opportunities for students to acquire these critical competences as part of their academic training in a systematic fashion. This chapter first discusses the challenges social workers face today as a result of the transformation of typical social spaces and administrative challenges as a result of digitalization and increased informationalization of professional social work work contexts. These are characterized by an increasing hybridization, that is a connection of physical and virtual places of space. Next, the chapter discusses the required adapted set of competencies social workers need in all of their professional capacities, allowing them to regain professional agency in such environments. These include not so much a substitution of existing competencies, but rather their extension to include new forms of literacies. The main focus here is on digital and data literacy. The chapter shares the key insights of a research methodology module (BA and MA level) offered both in traditional campus/face-to-face and online format, offering best practices how students can acquire and discover critical digital literacies in a safe learning space.

Publication
M. Arnold (Ed.), The handbook of applied teaching and learning in social work management education: Theories, methods, and practices in higher education. Springer International.
Joachim K. Rennstich
Joachim K. Rennstich
Professor International Social Work and Research Methods

My research interests include the development of digital capitalism, digital literacy and teaching-methodologies.