ICDL Digital Literacy Day 2017 was held on 21 July 2017 at the Singapore Management University (SMU), Mochtar Riady Auditorium. More than 120 corporate executives and higher education representatives attended the event which aims to create greater awareness and highlight on the need of adopting relevant digital and ICT skills at the higher education level to prepare student for the future workforce.

Speaking at the event, Guest of Honour, Senior Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Education & Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ms Low Yen Ling agreed that it is crucial for Singapore to proactively prepare for and adopt the digital economy. She added, “The key to this is to build strong digital capabilities for the people and enterprises. Therefore, there are ongoing efforts to develop a digitally competent workforce, ranging from programmes for our students, to post-graduation transition and lifelong learning initiatives.”

Mr. Damien O’ Sullivan, CEO of ICDL Foundation spoke about the emerging ICT trends in workplace and in education worldwide, citing that employers are now looking at candidates with excellent soft skills and hard skills. On top of that, Mr O’Sullivan also shared briefly on students’ performance on the ‘Perception and Reality’ study that was conducted in Singapore and in Asia early this year.

The study was then elaborated by Professor Swapna Gottipati, assistant professor of information systems at Singapore Management University (SMU), where she deep-dived into the research methodology and findings. Overall, the results showed that students in Singapore overestimated their digital literacy standards in basic application software such as Words Processing and Spreadsheets.

The event also saw a panel of experts discussing on the current job trends and preparing Asia’s future workforce ready for the workplace. The panel speakers include Professor Swapna Gottipati from SMU, Mr Mark Nivan Singh, Deputy Director, Department of Educational Development – Singapore Polytechnic, Mr. Stephen Yee, Assistant Executive Director and Senior Director of Training – Singapore National Employers Federation, as well as Professor Dr. Kamaljit Singh Anand, Executive Director, Institute of Management Studies – NOIDA, from India.

The event ended on a high note with the announcement of winners for the first ever ICDL Digital Challenge 2017 in Asia, that was highly anticipated.

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