UPTAKE ICT: A NETWORK OF STAKEHOLDERS AGAINST DIGITAL ILLITERACY
#Uptake_ICT2life-cycle: digital literacy and inclusion to learners with disadvantaged background# is an Erasmus + project that aims at enhancing digital literacy among adults with disadvantaged backgrounds. The partners have produced didactic materials and pedagogical guidelines to meet this aim. Based on these materials, and their didactical exploitation, a network of stakeholders was formed and trained in order to subsequently be able to teach citizens that both have disadvantaged backgrounds and are digitally illiterate or quasi-illiterate. This paper relates how this experience was undertaken in Portugal in what concerns the creation of the Stakeholders' network and presents its results. The reality that has boosted the creation of this project was the shocking situation portrayed in 2013 Eurostat statistics, according to which one in every three Portuguese had never used the Internet . Uptake ICT was then conceived and designed in order to engage synergies to counter this problem, aiming at a variety of focus groups (but paying special attention to learners of various ages that have never used Internet, like adults with disadvantaged backgrounds ), in line with the transversal priorities for education, training and youth of the European Commission and seeking to assist in the meeting of the aims of Europe 2020. To add up, it also intended to enhance and to develop ideas that answer to the Societal Challenges’ needs, by sharing and creating scientific, social, technological and policies impact.
The main aspects that the project focused on were digital literacy inclusion, re-qualification and employability of disadvantaged citizens, in order to help them to face the present process of civilisational change (social, political, economic, and cultural). The addressed priorities were to contribute towards a reduction of the number of low-skilled adults (re-skilling and up-skilling of adults thanks to lifelong-learning and training), and to strengthen the links between education and employment in the area of ICT | New technologies | digital literacy and digital competences | basic skills. After having identified both the most preeminent needs and ways of integrating ICT in daily life, and a set of good practices already tested in the areas of digital literacy, inclusion and employability, the project team has built a number of educational contents addressing the issues that were considered most relevant in three main levels of knowledge (Basic, Intermediate, and advanced) , and in the four languages of the project (Portuguese, Italian, English and German). The decision to work on the three levels was due to the fact that in the various partner countries there were groups of target audiences that were positioned differently with respect to their level of digital expertise. The teaching-learning materials that were conceived were afterwards reworked in order to fit in a variety of contexts and formats (e-modules, ebook, MOOC). This option for multi-format was taken having in mind different learning profiles , and the need to provide flexible and attractive materials in order to avoid any kind of rejection. Finally, a number of didactical guidelines were produced in order to provide an interface of suggestions to the stakeholders that would use these materials in their classes or workshop sessions.