Wednesday, November 17, 2004

granny @ work questions

1. Although Riggs mentions the digital divide and the importance of continued training for older workers, I never quite got a handle on what kind of baseline she was using to define technology competency - sometimes it seemed as simple as the ability to use the Internet, sometimes it seemed to require a more complex set of skills. What defines technology competency, skill, or a closing of the digital divide?

2. Something I hear fairly often from people in graduate programs (either leading to jobs in academia or librarianship) are optimistic opinions about the future of the job market, since many Matures and Boomers will be retiring in the next five to ten years. According to Riggs' research, it sounds like this is a myth. Additionally, because of downsizing and budget cuts, some vacant positions are either not being filled or are being restructured to involve reduced hours and benefits. What are some ways that organizations in general, and universities and libraries in particular, can balance the interests of older workers who have invested loyalty, time, and creativity with an organization and younger workers, who want to get their foot in the door and begin their careers? Is there enough work to go around?

3. Through the reflections of older individuals who have enrolled in continuing education technology programs and classes, Riggs shows the benefits of this kind of learning. What are the limitations? What is the optimal setting and curriculum for information literacy and technology training?

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