Aims and objectives

This module will:

  • explore how your digital footprint can affect your professional image
  • help you use online networking platforms to develop your professional profile
  • explore platforms to enhance your digital skills.

After completing this module, you will be able to:

  • maintain a professional online presence
  • use your professional presence to connect with others and increase your employability
  • build a portfolio that showcases your digital skills to employers.

6. Professional development and digital skills

You can enhance your employability by taking professional development courses. These can help you develop the skills you will need in your future workplace.

Identify skills for your industry

Apart from your discipline knowledge, there may be specific skills that are valued in your future workplace. You can reach out to industry professionals in your online networks to ask them to recommend skills that are important for you to learn.

Australian Government - Department of Education, Skills and Employment states that digital skills are increasingly critical for participation in the workforce. This includes "the ability to search and navigate, create, communicate and collaborate, think critically, analyse information, and address safety and wellbeing using a variety of digital technologies."

Online courses

There are many online courses you can complete to help you develop the skills you need. The Digital Essentials modules, including this one, provide a quick introduction to develop your understanding of important digital skills and recommend further ways for you to increase your competency.


Open access online courses or MOOCs (Massive Open Online Course) such as UQ MOOCs, allow you to enrol in a variety of subjects provided by different universities and professional providers. Consider participating in a MOOC to develop knowledge and skills in particular areas. Some of the largest MOOC providers are edX and Coursera.

Short courses

There are a range of training providers who specialise in shorter courses.

  • LinkedIn Learning — contains online training videos and tutorials focusing on software and skills in IT, design and business. Course topics include office applications, 3D animation, audio engineering, CAD, software development, digital photography, video editing, Python programming and web design. You have access to LinkedIn Learning courses via the Library.
  • Khan Academy — provides courses in topics ranging from maths, science, computer programming to history and art history.
  • Future Learn — offers a diverse selection of courses from universities.
  • Code Academy — free online coding lessons to get started on languages such as HTML, Python, CSS, and JavaScript.

Demonstrating your digital skills

To showcase your skills you can:

  • Add certificates or course awards to your ePortfolio, LinkedIn account and resume.
  • Add LinkedIn Learning certificates of completion to your LinkedIn profile. When you complete a course or learning path on LinkedIn Learning, you'll be prompted to add the certificate and new skills to your LinkedIn profile.
  • Take LinkedIn Skills Assessments to validate the skills in your LinkedIn profile. In your profile, go to the Skills & Endorsements section and click Take skill quiz. You can choose a multiple choice quiz and get a badge if you pass. Quizzes include Adobe products, Microsoft suite and many programming skills. To get you prepared for the quizzes, the Library:

Ways to demonstrate your digital skills for job applications

If you have not yet finished any courses or certificates, you are still likely to have developed many digital skills in your studies and personal life. When you are preparing to get a job think about online activities you have completed and the skills you developed.

Think of activities you might have done that demonstrate digital skills.  Insert the tool you used or activity you performed in the statements to make it more specific.

If you have used tools such as Google docs for group assignments, a collaborative workspace tool or an online platform, such as Zoom, to run a presentation or event:

 Use collaborative online tools as part of an effective team to organise, display and communicate information.

If you have used online platforms such as Twitter or a blog to communicate with different audiences:

 Develop online content to increase engagement with a target audience.

If you have used polling software to gather information or an online tool to create an infographic:

 Evaluate and implement a new application to address an information need.

If you have created backups and strategies to protect data and information when completing your projects:

 Implement measures to ensure data was protected from system failure.

If you have you used programs like Python, Open Office or another open source software:

 Demonstrate knowledge and benefits of using open source software.

If you have improved and narrowed search results and verified the accuracy of the results you found:

 Identify quality information using advanced search and evaluation techniques.

Continuing professional development

Once you are in the workforce you may need to keep up-to-date with the latest research in your field. Many professions rely on evidence based practice to develop new progams and initatives. To keep up to date with the latest research in your field, the evidence base, you will need access to current research.

You may not always have access to academic databases so an alternative way to access this research is via Open Access providers. Learn more about searching for Open Access materials in the Information essentials module.

Duration:   Approximately 30 minutes

Graduate attributes

Knowledge and skills you can gain to contribute to your Graduate attributes:

 Critical judgement

 Independence and creativity

Check your knowledge

Check what you know about this topic:

Take the quiz

Support at UQ

Access UQ services to assist you with personal or study-related issues.