ECDL Foundation Newsletter -
                                September 2013

Welcome to the latest edition of the ECDL Foundation Newsletter. All articles featured in this HTML version can be read in full in a downloadable PDF version of the newsletter.

ECDL Foundation in Action
                                      Around the World

New ICDL Launched in Zambia

4 September saw the official launch of New ICDL in Zambia. Over 40 delegates gathered in Lusaka, including ICDL representatives from Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa.

Guest of honour at the launch was the Deputy Permanent Secretary of Education, Mrs Christine Mayondi who was very enthusiastic upon hearing of the advantages that New ICDL will bring to the people of Zambia. Read more.

European e-Competence Framework for ICT Users Published

This CEN ICT Skills workshop project, funded by the European Commission and led by ECDL Foundation, has been running since December 2011. The first version of this reference framework for ICT user competences has now been approved for publication by the European Commission and CEN, completing an action of the ‘Digital Agenda for Europe’ in the process. Read more.

New ECDL launched in Switzerland

New ECDL was launched by ECDL Switzerland at their Test Centre Day on the 24 September. 200 participants gathered in Zurich for the launch, which was also attended by ECDL Foundation Chief Executive, Damien O’Sullivan. Read more.

ICDL, a Requirement for University Students in Yemen and Sudan

The University of Science and Technology (UST) in Yemen has adopted ICDL for all of its students. Existing foundation-level computer courses have been cancelled from study plans, and now all students must obtain ICDL as part of the requirements for passing from second to third year.

Future University (FU) in Khartoum, Sudan, has also taken a decision to make ICDL a requirement for all of its students. FU is a private university, with the majority of its students being the children of Sudanese working abroad. Read more.

Tecmedia and IT Security, Costa Rica

Tecmedia IT Academy from Costa Rica, an Accreditation Partner of ICDL Latinoamérica, recently launched an IT Security course, based on the flexibility of ICDL Profile, for high profile government staff members.

The 5 week course is intended to train and certify them with digital skills, highlighting in particular the important role that IT Security plays in the functioning of any organisation that relies on technology. Read more.

New Developments for ICDL in South Africa, Swaziland, Lesotho, Namibia & Botswana

ECDL Foundation and ICDL South Africa have signed a new agreement appointing ICDL South Africa to manage the ICDL programme in the territories of South Africa, Swaziland and Lesotho, as well as to conduct development work (on behalf of ICDL Africa) in Namibia and Botswana.

The agreement runs until 2018 and aims to bring digital skills to 100,000 individuals during that time, with ICDL South Africa opening a new office in Johannesburg in response to increased activity in the Gauteng area. Read more.

ICDL and Pennsylvania’s Intermediary Units

Pennsylvania’s 29 intermediate units were established in 1971 by the Pennsylvania General Assembly. The intermediate units are entrepreneurial, highly skilled, technology-rich providers of cost-effective, instructional, and operational services to school districts, charter schools, and over 2,400 non-public and private schools.

Intermediate units that have recently implemented ICDL are the Tuscarora Intermediate Unit, Central Susquehanna Intermediate Unit, and the Capitol Area Intermediate Unit. These IUs offer education programmes in juvenile correctional institutions. Read more.

ICDL expands into Tajikistan in partnership with University of Central Asia

ICDL Asia Accreditation Partner, the University of Central Asia (UCA) has initiated a major drive to expand the availability of the ICDL programme in Tajikistan through partnerships with several Government agencies. ICDL Asia General Manager Daniel Palmer, and UCA SPCE Deputy Director Gulnara Djunushalieva met with senior officials in Dushanbe. Agreements to formalise the adoption of the ICDL programme by these agencies are expected in the near future. Read more.

AQAS Receives Official Delegation from Sudan

Advanced Quality Assurance Systems (AQAS), the ICDL National Operator in Sudan, has received in its headquarters in Jordan, a high-level delegation from the Ministry of Science and Communications in Sudan. AQAS has recently conducted a new ICDL awareness campaign in Sudan. In this campaign, anyone could sit for the ICDL diagnostic tests for free. Arrangements were made with the test provider (Specto Ltd.) to donate the diagnostics and the accredited centres to open their labs to citizens without any charge from either party. The campaign was highly publicised and was a great success. Read more.

News from the ECDL / ICDL

Defining 21st Century Literacies

8 September was International Literacy Day.
In fact, it was the 48th one since the UN started it in 1965. UNESCO deems literacy “a fundamental human right and the foundation for lifelong learning”, considering it vital to the success of individuals, communities and societies.

Each year, the day has a different theme, putting emphasis on what role literacy can play to address world issues. This year the theme was Literacies for the 21st Century. UNESCO describes this as “the need to realize basic literacy skills for all as well as equip everyone with more advanced literacy skills as part of lifelong learning."

We applaud UNESCO’s call to recognise the Literacies for the 21st Century, and continue to work toward a day when such as call is no longer required.

Until then, hope you had a nice International Literacy Day! Read more.

Programme News

Education and Skills are Top Priorities for Europe’s Tech Entrepreneurs

Teachers should be made digitally confident and competent, universities should be encouraged to add digital components to their curriculum, and EU countries should offer a digital certificate course to provide basic digital skills to graduates. These are some of the 22 key measures from the Startup Europe Manifesto put forward by a group of leading European tech entrepreneurs. The objective of this action plan is to overcome roadblocks that are threatening Internet-driven economic growth and to foster entrepreneurship and innovation in Europe. So far, 3000 people have signed the Startup Europe Manifesto. More on the Manifesto.

Become a Supporter of the Safer Internet Day 2014

The Safer Internet Day will be celebrated worldwide on 11 February 2014 around the theme ‘Let’s create a better Internet together’. All kinds of activities will be organised to raise awareness of online safety in over 100 countries across all continents. On the same topic, the London School of Economics released a new report on children’s online safety which recommends the development of education packages for parents that would be aimed at specific age groups. This report looks at emerging policy priorities for online safety regarding children from birth to eight years old. Read more.

EC Announces Plans for a Single Telecoms Market

The European Commission recently announced the Connected Continent legislative package in order to turn Europe into a global digital leader. Europe currently risks missing out on the opportunities that ICT can deliver for growth and employment because of the absence of a genuine single market for electronic communications. Read more.

Digital Divide and a £2 Billion Skills Gap

A Social Digital Research Symposium led by the LSE, Ofcom and Tinder Foundation and comprising academic institutions and charities is attempting to address digital exclusion in the UK. Go ON UK says that around 16 million people in the UK aged 15 and over do not have basic online skills but 90 per cent of all jobs are set to require ICT literacy by 2015. It is estimated that Britain will need 750,000 skilled digital workers by 2017 and that if the UK can’t support that growth the skills gap in the digital marketing industry could end up costing the UK up to £2bn a year. Read more.

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