Exploring Students’ Knowledge and Practice of Digital Citizenship in Higher Education

Ahlam Mohammed Al-Abdullatif, Azza Ali Gameil


The purpose of this study is to investigate undergraduate students’ knowledge and practice of eight of the nine elements of digital citizenship: digital commerce, digital communication, digital literacy, digital etiquette, digital law, digital rights and responsibility, digital health and wellness and digital security. The sample population for this descriptive study comprised 204 undergraduate students selected by purposeful sampling. The results show that undergraduate students have an insufficient level of knowledge about good digital citizenship. A significant number of undergraduate students do observe eight digital citizenship elements through several ethical practices; however, the study revealed several concerns among participants in regards to security and safety, such as verifying the reliability and credibility of digital resources, checking the accuracy of information on the Internet, interpreting laws and penalties related to using digital resources, reporting irresponsible behaviour to the appropriate authorities and limiting the time and duration of daily digital device use. The results of this study show that an individual’s extent of experience using the Internet is not a factor that affects the level of knowledge and practice of digital citizenship among undergraduate students. Conversely, the nature of academic specialisation, particularly technology-heavy courses (e.g. Educational Technology), are among the factors that affect the knowledge and practice of good digital citizenship. This article offers several recommendations for future study, policy development and practice.


digital citizenship, students’ knowledge, students’ practice, higher education

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Copyright (c) 2020 Ahlam Mohammed Al-Abdullatif, Azza Ali Gameil

International Journal of Emerging Technologies in Learning (iJET) – eISSN: 1863-0383
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