Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to illustrate an Inclusive Digital Literacy Framework for vulnerable populations in rural areas under the Digital India program. Key challenges include addressing multiple literacies such as health literacy, financial literacy and eSafety for low-literate learners in low-resource settings with low internet bandwidth, lack of ICT facilities and intermittent electricity. Design/methodology/approach: This research implemented an educational model based on the proposed framework to train over 1,000 indigenous people using an integrated curriculum for digital literacies at remote settlements. The model uses mobile technology adapted for remote areas, context enabled curriculum, along with flexible learning schedules. Findings: The education model exemplifies a viable strategy to overcome persistent challenges by taking tablet-based digital literacies directly to communities. It engages different actors such as existing civil societies, schools and government organizations to provide digital literacy and awareness thereby improving both digital and life skills. It demonstrates the potential value of a comprehensive Digital Literacy framework as a powerful lever for Digital Inclusion. Practical Implications: Policy makers can use this transformational model to extend the reach and effectiveness of Digital Inclusion through the last mile enhancing existing training and service centers that offer the traditional model of Digital Literacy Education. Originality/value: This innovative mobile learning model based on the proposed Digital Framework for Inclusion instilled motivation, interest and confidence while providing effective digital training and conducting exams directly in the tribal settlements for low-literate learners in remote settings. Through incorporating multiple literacies, this model serves to empower learners, enhance potential, improve well-being and reduce the risk of exploitation. © 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited.
Prof. Prema Nedungadi, Menon, R., Gutjahr, G., Erickson, L., and Raghu Raman, “Towards an Inclusive Digital Literacy Framework for Digital India”, Education and Training, 2018.