Nine Elements of Digital Citizenship
At that same conference, ISTE released the book Digital Citizenship in
Schools, in which Gerald Bailey and I
cover nine themes that we discovered
are key to the concept of digital citizenship. (See Nine Elements of Digital
Citizenship.) The book includes updated coverage of the themes as well
as activities for the classroom and
district use that can help get students
started on their journey toward becoming full citizens of the emerging
global digital frontier.
Digital citizenship describes the
norms of appropriate, responsible
behavior with regard to technology
use. Our nine elements help
users focus on these issues,
but they expand beyond
the boundary of just
working with technology appropriately.
They also begin to set
the stage for how we
work with each other
in a global, digital
society. These nine
a foundation for
helping to educate
children on the
issues that face
them in an increasingly technological
It is also our
hope that digital
create a base for all
technology users to
begin to discuss the
Full electronic participation in society. Can all users participate in
a digital society at acceptable levels if they choose?
Electronic buying and selling of goods. Do users have the
knowledge and protection to buy and sell in a digital world?
Electronic exchange of information. Is there an understanding
of the digital communication methods and when they are
The capability to use digital technology and to know when and
how to use it. Have users taken the time to learn about digital
technologies? Do they share that knowledge with others?
The standards of conduct expected by other digital
technology users. Do users consider others when using
The legal rights and restrictions governing technology use.
Are users aware of laws (rules, policies) that govern the
use of digital technologies?
The privileges and freedoms extended to all digital technology
users and the behavioral expectations that come with them.
Are users ready to protect the rights of others to defend their
own digital rights?
The elements of physical and psychological well-being related to
digital technology use. Do users consider the risks (both physical
and psychological) when using digital technologies?
The precautions that all technology users must take to
guarantee their personal safety and the security of their
networks. Do users take the time to protect their information
while creating precautions to protect others’ data as well?