Language teaching is necessarily a multi-modal process requiring learners to exercise the skills of reading, writing, speaking, listening, interaction and mediation. Technology has long played a central role in language education and today HE language educators must continually develop their own digital skills to create affordances for language learning through digital tools, such as, social media, online language exchanges and target language materials. The domain focusses on the development of personal confidence and professional competence in using digital skills for language learning, teaching and assessment. The domain also encourages the identification of opportunities for technology to support and empower language learners in higher education. Digital tools and media offer considerable potential for the enhancement of the language learning experience. However, we are convinced that these can only be exploited appropriately by a language educator with relevant competences in all the domains. Digital competences for teaching languages cannot replace, for example, the pedagogical skills, subject knowledge or values of a language educator.
In some language teacher competence frameworks, digital competences are viewed as transversal skills. However, we consider all of the competence domains to be interconnected and at times overlapping and for the sake of clarity and coherence we treat these as a discrete domain. We are also aware that the DigiCompEdu Framework (https://ec.europa.eu/jrc/en/digcompedu) outlines myriad competences for educators in all levels of the system and with respect to all subjects. Here, we concentrate on those competences that are specific to language education in HE.