Brussels, 27 November 2008
Information and communication technologies (ICT) are not yet sufficiently present in Europe's education systems, and reforms must be introduced to adapt them to the technological changes sweeping through our societies. This is the main conclusion of a report adopted by the European Commission.
The report, entitled "The use of ICT to support innovation and lifelong learning for all - A report on progress", describes how the use of e-learning has developed in Europe since 2000. It assesses the impact of ICT on school and higher education, while taking other education sectors into account. It then draws conclusions for the next stage of using information technology in education and training, and identifies the challenges posed by the need for improving the quality and efficiency in Europe's education systems, and in particular for pedagogical, technological and organisational innovation.
The basic findings of the paper are:
Successful education depends increasingly on the confident, competent and innovative use of ICT. This was emphasised in the Recommendation of the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers concerning 'Key Competences for Lifelong Learning', published in December 2006. The Recommendation identifies eight Key Competences that every citizen should develop by the end of compulsory education. Of particular interest in the current context is Key Competence Number 4, 'Digital Competence', which involves the confident and critical use of information society technology for work, leisure and communication.
An inclusive and open approach is very important in view of the digital divide. On this basis, the Commission proposes, as a priority for its policy cooperation work with the Member States, to exploit fully the potential of information technology in educational systems and, concretely, the associated need for accompanying pedagogical, organisational and technological innovations, by:
For more information:
The Commission Staff Working Document:
Key Competences for Lifelong Learning: