digital Footprint

Q2 Your Evolving Footprint

5. Digital Footprint


It is important to begin thinking about creating a more formal or professional web presence for the future. Watch the movie above known as The Digital Dossier to learn about evolving digital footprints.   

Key Vocabulary

Algorithms: An algorithm is a detailed step-by-step instruction set or formula for solving a problem, or completing a task such as recipe or programming a robot. 

Digital footprint: On the Internet a digital footprint is the word used to describe the trail, traces or footprints that people leave online. So that means anytime you do or write something online, there will remain a trace even if you delete it.

Convey: To convey is to communicate a message or information. 

I Can Statements

  • manage my digital footprint
  • analyze my web presence


1. After watching the movie The Digital Dossier write a paragraph (five-six sentences minimum) answering the questions below:


A.  When do you think your Digital Footprint began? (You may want to ask your parents about when they began posting information about you online.)

B. Google yourself using your first and last name and hometown e.g."John Smith, Grand Rapids". Use quotation marks (" ") for a more accurate search. What did you discover?  

C.  Go to Google and do a search for Katy Perry, Serena Williams, or Bill Gates. Describe the digital footprint of the person you researched. What message does the footprint convey? 

D.  Think about the specific footprints or information you leave behind on the sites from your map in Quest One (such as what you viewed, typed, or accessed).  If this was the only information someone had about you, what would they think about you? What assumptions would they make about your habits & behaviors? What does your web presence say about you?

E. How are algorithms being used by companies to influence me? 

2. Watch this video about algorithms and think about how they might impact information about you online.

3. In computing, programmers write algorithms for web browsers that instruct the computer how to perform a task. One task might be to capture the web sites you visited and then show you ads for games, books, concerts, etc. because you visited a certain site, made a purchase online, or posted something on a blog or social media site. This can happen on any device you use for web browsing, your cell phone, tablet, or computer. Think...

4. Have a class discussion and share your suspicions of whether this has happened to you. You might not have realized it yet. Start watching and questioning why different ads show up when you are browsing or downloading apps. This is how many companies make money from your online actions.

5. Write a Digital Footprint Reflection in your File Space and share it with your teacher.

Completing this Quest

In order to complete this Quest, make sure your file is saved in your File Space. Make sure to have a meeting with your teacher about your File Space. You may need this in a future Thing.

Check off this Quest on the 21t4s roadmap 

I am ready to tackle Quest 3

Competencies & Standards

MITECS   Michigan Integrated Technology Competencies for Students, and

ISTE Standards for Students

1. Empowered Learner
a. Articulate and set personal learning goals, developing strategies leveraging technology to achieve them, and reflect on the learning process itself to improve learning outcomes

2. Digital Citizen
a. Cultivate and manage their digital identity and reputation and aware of their permanence of their actions in the digital world
b. Engage in positive, safe, legal and ethical behavior when using technology
d. manage their personal data to maintain digital privacy and security