DCDS Context Analysis Report
What is the profile of those EU citizens who are at risk of digital exclusion and what are the key motivation drivers for them to enrol in a digital upskilling pathway?
These are the two principal questions that the partners of the DCDS project have tried to answer involving policy makers, educational experts and digitally low-skilled adults in a series of focus groups carried at national level in Italy, Romania, Latvia, Greece and Spain during the first 5 months of the project in 2018.
As a result, the report does not only represent the main contextual basis for the development of the Digital Competences Development System, but also provides an interesting and updated European overview on digital training needs and strategies for adult learners.
Among other relevant factors, the capacity of DCDS in providing certification of the acquired competences (in an integrated way with the already existing systems and practices) is validated by public authorities and recognized by the private sector. This capacity is considered as the most important issue for the wider acceptance of the system and especially for its sustainability.
Finally, the current situation shows that, in all partner countries large segments of the population are at risk of social exclusion due to the lack of digital competences. Within this framework, the sustainability of DCDS can be guaranteed by finding a balance between priorities (scenarios: job context, daily activities, etc.), actual material resources, adults' motivation, and the services/products (self-assessment, blended course, certification) provided by the project.
With four out of five partner countries below the European average score in the DESI 2018 ranking, the DCDS project represents not only an important opportunity for the organisations and the stakeholders who will be finally involved in the local pilots, but also an interesting experimentation for all those active in the promotion and implementation of e-inclusion of all Europe.
Contents of the self-assessment tool
In this report, we present the full set of self-assessment questions (SA-Qs) and a first set of knowledge and ability questions (KA-Qs) to be used in the online initial assessment of candidate customers of the DCD environment (DCDE), i.e. the online platform being developed by the DCDS project for blended learning activity. These questions, along with some additional KA-Qs which are being defined as part of the learning material, will be embedded in the platform’s online tool and will be translated into the five piloting partners’ languages (Greek, Italian, Latvian, Romanian and Spanish), in order to be tested during the pilots planned for March-May 2019.
The potential users of the DCDE are adults (25+) with no or low digital skills. In fact, people without any digital experience and skills will skip the online self-assessment test, as they would not be able to take it and also because their need for training is self-evident.
Absolute beginners will therefore be offered to enter directly into the DCDS blended learning process, after taking an initial face-to-face training designed to enable them to start using a computer, performing simple operations with keyboard and mouse and using the desktop interface. Absolute beginners will be asked anyway (in person) a set of profiling questions to assess other aspects that may be relevant to facilitate and enhance their training.
For the other potential DCDE users, the questions illustrated in this report aim to identify their digital competence weaknesses, so as to decide whether they indeed need to be trained by DCDS (which is currently limited to DigComp’s foundation level 1-2), and which training offer they should start from. The results of the online self-assessment will feed into the candidate/user profile, where they will be integrated with the answers to another set of profiling questions. These additional questions concern the candidate’s personal data, his/her main interests and motivations and other aspects that could help in the learning process.