The transition through the first year of university study is challenging for the majority of students. For students from Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) backgrounds, commencing studies in an English-Medium Instruction (EMI) university program presents a number of specific challenges. These students are faced with meeting both language demands as well as learning expectations of the institution, which often differ markedly from their previous formal learning experiences. Developing CALD students’ digital literacy practices has been shown to lead to improved academic performance, success and retention in some higher education settings. This paper focuses on the digital literacy practices of undergraduates at a national public university in a Gulf State. Results from a survey and focus groups are analysed to identify the students’ access to and use of digital technologies, in order to better understand how their academic success can be enhanced through digital literacy development. The study identifies a disconnect between students’ perceptions of their digital capabilities and the institutional requirements for study. The research recommends that providing integrated, institution-wide digital literacy development focused on accessing, assessing and incorporating online resources in their work, will help improve transitioning CALD students’ preparedness for undergraduate study in this and other EMI universities.
- Academic literacy
- Culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) students
- Digital literacy
- English-medium instruction (EMI)
- Information literacy
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Library and Information Sciences