Check out the new Learning Zone – a brand new online hub packed with information and resources to help you incorporate digital tools into your youth work offer.
The new Learning Zone at digitalyouthwork.scot is the place to find knowledge and information about digital youth work organised into a play book. Developed by YouthLink Scotland with support from the youth work sector, it has been designed with practitioners very much in mind and aims to present material in a way that’s genuinely useful for anyone who is planning, delivering and evaluating the impact of digital youth work.
The Learning Zone provides information on how to incorporate digital tools and activities into youth work practice, structured with the needs of busy youth workers in mind. The online hub is the latest addition to YouthLink Scotland’s digitalyouthwork.scot website, a dedicated online resource to promote digital youth work in Scotland, with events, training and policy guidance under one roof.
Youth workers will find relevant information to support young people to navigate their online lives, to develop their digital skills, to play digital games together or to meet online. The Getting Started section helps with definitions, sources of information and examples of Digital Youth Work practice.
The material includes detailed checklists, such as the Safe and Secure Checklist, to help you plan, risk-assess and set up activities in a way that takes account of both cyber security and personal online safety risks.
One of the key elements you’ll find is new training materials about Cyber Resilience. This material was developed with support from the Scottish Government and provides information about the key aspects of cyber resilience, based on expertise available from the National Cyber Security Centre. Short video content can be used as an e-learning for individuals to follow in their own time or can be easily incorporated into group training sessions.
We’ve included a section that offers an approach to Evaluating the Impact of digital youth work, based on the National Youth Work Outcomes and Skills Framework. The skills in the framework describe key building blocks that enable young people to make progress towards the national youth work outcomes. For each skill there are examples of indicators that could be used in a digital context to describe observable behaviours that help us set goals and measure progress with young people.
Because of the dynamic nature of the digital world and the rapid pace of change, we have created this material in a way that can be developed over time. We are interested in making the resources as focused as possible, but also including links to other relevant material that’s available on other sites. We’d love to hear from you if you have material that should be included or linked to.
The Learning Zone is a new element for the digitalyouthwork.scot website which was set up in 2020 to provide a hub with links to resources and information. For many young people, digital is an integral part of their lives, a key aspect of education, socialising and having fun. The sector’s unconstrained non-formal educational approach makes it uniquely placed to respond to young people’s needs in a digitalising society and play a significant role in bridging the digital divide and promoting inclusion.
While there is a great variety of experience and understanding in relation to digital as part of youth work, The Learning Zone is a response to the need to have relevant information on digital youth work gathered together into one clear view, helping to provide knowledge, cohesion and understanding.
The Learning Zone is not a static resource, but something that can constantly evolve. Please do tell us if there are resources you would like to see included. In particular, we would love to be sharing case studies that illustrate good practice in digital youth work in Scotland. If you have a story to share with learning that’s relevant to others, please get in touch with Hilary Phillips via firstname.lastname@example.org.