I was invited by East Dunbartonshire Leisure and Culture Trust to deliver a short social media #peptalk ahead of their Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) funded digital skills training course to support front line librarians in being able to support the users’ use of mobile devices and other hardware skill support. This came at a timely period as we are in the process of preparing a couple of papers from Digital Commonwealth on the themes of event-led digital participation and supporting information literacy and developing digital skills- and the SLIC training is featured in the Royal Society of Edinburgh’s Spreading the Benefits of Digital Participation report from April 2014.
The Scottish Library and Information Council is piloting a national training programme, that aims to enhance the digital skills of frontline library staff. The scheme covers a range of hardware to ensure that staff are equipped to support users of mobile devices. The programme, funded by the Scottish Government’s Public Library Improvement Fund, has been successfully implemented in Inverclyde and North Ayrshire libraries and will now be rolled out nationally. (Spreading the Benefits of Digital Participation, The Royal Society of Edinburgh, 2014: 50)
The community activist in me loves doing talks like this – especially as it is about ensuring the value of libraries in terms of wellbeing and development remain at the heart of the community, supporting people with their digital tools rather than being replaced by them – for instance, if you stick your postcode into the SCVO’s fancy new Digital Scotland “Let’s Get it On” site, you will no doubt get a library as your nearest centre. As a sub note (ok, a bug bear!) I think it also worth noting and continuing emphasising the importance in finding space and contexts for people to use the internet and access digital environments in a way that isn’t just to fill out the unsavable, non-refundable universal credit applications that take longer than the allocated time allowed on most public access computers – it grinds my gears.. so anywhere we can make digital participation mean more than filling out forms, the better.
My slides from the talk are below –