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Mapping Digital Makers

A State of the Art Review by Dr. Julian Sefton-Green

On 12 March Nominet Trust hosted a discussion with Dr Julian Sefton-Green, the author of the State of Art Review: Mapping Digital Makers, about the issues around inspiring and supporting a generation of digital makers. If you were unable to make it, you can watch the evening's proceedings here:

See video

Or if you prefer you can listen to the discussion here.

In today’s world digital technology is a given for most young people. But if they are to contribute to a rapidly changing and complex global society, they need to understand how digital technologies work. Young people need the skills of content creation, collaboration and communication so they can use digital technologies to solve problems and express themselves.

Digital making is the creative process of making a product or digital artefact - from websites, apps, games, and 3D animations to physical objects driven by microcontrollers.

Digital making will often mean using coding and programming skills as well as the creative use of digital tools to make new products. Digital making skills are fundamentally underpinned by an understanding of computational thinking but may also include things like creative teamwork, problem solving, engineering and design in order to build new technologies.

However, the role of digital technology for learning and the place of making all come with different (often competing) traditions and educational practices. As such, understanding how we best support young people as digital makers is a complex challenge and one which requires careful consideration – something this report sets out to do.

As we continue to work with partners such as Nesta and Mozilla to support a generation of digital makers, I look forward to your comments and hope we can work together to address the issues set out in this document.