Digital Citizenship Resources

I believe Digital Citizenship to be how you interact, impact, involve and inspire with integrity in the digital world.


Journal Entry 2 - Your Digital Footprint

Have you ever Googled yourself? Take the time to do so if you have not. You, like I, will be surprised at what you find. Unless you have been living under a rock for the past 10 years, you will find images, social media accounts and possibly your birthday. Really. I found mine and was shocked to see it. The fact that all this information is out there may make you think that you have been exploited somehow and your information released without your permission. To be honest, this is likely your doing. Your digital footprint is what you have found. The digital evidence you have left as you walked along the Internet.

Our digital footprint is an inevitable part of our life now. Instagram as an example has taken ownership of our students' spare time. They must "have more followers than people you follow... Otherwise you're a ghost" (Detwiler, 2016). This mentality is what encircles our students and leads them to post often and without considering what they post. They are compelled because of the unspoken rules of social media peer pressure. With apps like Snapchat, anonymity is a false mask that students believe in. They believe that their digital footprint is invisible and untraceable. This causes them to act in a way that defines this generation. Generation Z students are commonly bullies online, no work ethic and generally don't care (Ross, 2014).

Thinking of the current news stories about social media posts has my skin crawling. Heck, I'm looking through my accounts right now. Posts that are made with an attempt at humor or deliberately aggressive are all in the news. The world is watching. What you do post or did once can be brought back and affect you. The amount of time since the incident doesn't matter. Politicians, actors, and teachers are all being investigated for their actions. Their digital footprint is under scrutiny. It is ending careers.

Your digital footprint is something that will always be in the world we live in. Making our students and ourselves better about what we post and why we post. This is the beginning of a new age that needs more attention to what we post. Constant vigilance about what we post and the meaning behind it. Positive posts leave a digital footprint that gives a chance for this world. It encourages a change in how we do what we do. Reteaching us to think about the why behind our post. Creating a hesitation for reflection before taking a digital step is the right move. With the people being more conscientious of their actions we all will take a step away from the casual and impulsive actions our immediate access to technology has done to us.

I never thought that my digital footprint would make me think so much about how and why I post. I am eager to teach these things to my students and also my children. They are the future and will decide what will happen with the power and technology for the next generation.


Journal Entry 1 - What it means to me

Digital Citizenship is something I really had not heard of until I attended the ISTE Conference in Chicago this last summer. My district has been using technology in the classrooms since 2012 and I never thought of this element of the interaction between user and device. Learning more and more about Digital Citizenship through the masters program from Lamar University has grown my passion to learn more about this topic. This passion has affected me and my desire to better understand what it means to me.

My Personal Definition:
I believe Digital Citizenship to be how you interact, impact, involve and inspire with integrity in the digital world.

These “I” words connected with me to represent the integrity that should be used when approaching the powerful digital world. Without integrity in this arena, it is easy to fall down a rabbit hole of anonymous activity. The interactions and impact we users have goes unnoticed to us most of the time (Curran, 2012). We proceed without concern of our fellow users or the friends that are physically near us. We operate behind a mask that can become dangerous if we fail to involve others to keep us accountable for our clicks and posts.

In my opinion, the safe interaction of the user is the most important. As a parent of a curious child, I do my best to filter elements of life to her eyes and heart. Allowing them to pass through at a controlled pace. The web releases them at an unsafe and unhealthy way if found. Debauchery is around the corner but so is becoming too comfortable with clicking "allow" in the settings pop up (Polgar, 2015). All nine of these elements are crucial for one to learn but must begin with a focus on the overall safety of the user (Ribble, 2015). The digital world is like a kitchen knife that can be used to harm or create a masterfully crafted dinner.

Technology's impact on lives today spans a multitude of areas. Understanding these impacts is important to developing good digital citizenship.


Helpful Resources

Curran, M. (2012, June). iCitizen: Are you a socially responsible digital citizen. Paper presented at the International Society for Technology Education Annual Conference, San Antonio, TX. Retrieved from (PDF: icitizen_paper_M_Curran.pdf)

Detwiler, J. (2016, December/January). Technology and the American teenager. Popular Mechanics, 193(1), 100-107. Detwiler_Technology and the American Teenager.pdf

Ohler, J. (2012). Digital citizenship means character education for the digital age. Education Digest: Essential Readings Condensed for Quick Review, 77(8), 14-17. (PDF: Ohler_Digital_citizenship_means_character_education_2012.pdf)

Polgar, D. R., & Curran, M. B.F.X. (2015). We shouldn't assume people know what digital citizenship is. Retrieved from

Poth, R. (2018, Dec). 5 resources to help students — and teachers — understand copyright law. International Society for Technology in Education. Retrieved from

Ribble, M. (2015). Digital citizenship in schools: Nine elements all students should know. Eugene, OR: International Society for Technology in Education.

Rogers-Whitehead, C. (2019, Jan). Digital citizenship starts with the person not the tool! International Society for Technology in Education. Retrieved from

Ross, M. (2014). Digital natives-digital immigrants engaging the Google generation. Forum Lectures. Retrieved from Ross_Digital Natives-Digital Immigrants Engaging the Google Generation.pdf