Digital skills: succeeding in a digital world
Digital skills: succeeding in a digital world

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Digital skills: succeeding in a digital world

2 Which apps might be for me?

Now you’ll think about which tools might help you at work, at home or in your studies.

Activity 4 Same tools different uses

Timing: 10 minutes

Thinking about apps and tools by their different functions, and where those functions overlap, can help you evaluate their potential use. It can also help you think more creatively about the possibilities they provide.

The following video sets out some of the ways you can use apps and tools to help you in different areas of daily life, such as work, home or study. The apps are grouped under four categories:

  • tools for communicating/connecting
  • tools for creating
  • tools for collaborating
  • tools for managing information/keeping up to date.

As you watch the video, think about the apps described, and how well they fit into these groupings. These groupings are one way of thinking about apps. What are some other ways? How would you group them? Note your ideas in the box below.

Download this video clip.Video player: Video 2: Useful apps and tools
Skip transcript: Video 2: Useful apps and tools

Transcript: Video 2: Useful apps and tools

Apps can help you in a variety of different areas of daily life whether you're at home, at work, or studying. Tools for communicating and connecting are usually associated with leisure activities-- for example, Facebook, Instagram, Skype, and Twitter. These are great for sharing information, photos, video, and interesting links.
Some tools enable real time audio and video calls over the internet. These social media apps don't just help us to be more sociable. People use them to share ideas and boost their creativity as well as to have a bit of fun.
These tools can also be useful for work or for studying. Connecting with people allows you to discuss and explore new ideas and to network with people who have similar interests. Tools and apps make it easier to be creative. You can take photos, make audio and video clips, put together presentations, or remix content to give it a new spin.
They are also built to work with social media, which makes it easier to share what you create. Good presentation tools can help you to manage different media and deliver your message in more innovative ways, which goes a long way towards intensifying the power of your message. Collaboration tools are especially helpful if you need to work on a specific task with a group of people. Documents and assets are stored in a cloud, which makes it easy for them to be shared with others either at work or while you're studying.
Social media tools connect you to that cloud and make it easy for you to collaborate with others. Here are some examples. SlideShare makes it easy to share presentations. Google Docs and Dropbox make it easy to collaborate on documents.
There are a range of tools that provide collective calendars and task managers to help with project management. SurveyMonkey is useful for gathering opinions, but you can also use one of the many polling devices within social media. With all of these tools, you should always be aware of the different levels of security.
Our final group includes social networking tools that help you to keep up to date with the important people in your life whether that's at home, work, or while you're studying. These tools also make it easy for other people to keep up-to-date with what you're doing. For example, on LinkedIn, anyone that you're connected with can be notified whenever you update your profile with new skills, qualifications, or work experience.
Although you can use Twitter socially, it's also really valuable when it comes to breaking news before the formal media channels. Following people on Twitter can be useful for work and study because it makes it easy to track the key professionals in your field. Information management tools can help you to draw together ideas on projects. They allow you to manage interesting websites or links to useful information, and you can use keywords or tags to make your resources easy to find at a later date.
Then there are apps which help you find information quickly-- such as travel directions, train times, the nearest hotel or national trust property while you're on holiday. There are also apps that can help you manage budgets and banking online. As you can see, modern apps can help us with all sorts of areas of daily life in a way that many people wouldn't have thought possible just a few years ago.
End transcript: Video 2: Useful apps and tools
Video 2: Useful apps and tools
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Here are some of the different groups:

  • some apps that can help us in all three of our contexts (work, study and home life). You might have grouped them in this way.
  • you might group apps by whether they can be used across lots of different platforms, or whether you can ‘sync’ them on all your devices
  • you might have grouped them by the type of information they work with: text, image, data, finance and so on.

Apps are great enablers, they allow us to accomplish all sort of things.


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