University of Salamanca (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN23 Proceedings
Publication year: 2023
Pages: 4594-4599
ISBN: 978-84-09-52151-7
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2023.1223
Conference name: 15th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 3-5 July, 2023
Location: Palma, Spain
This paper reports on a European research project, funded by Erasmus+, which describes the transformative digital experiences of educators. The report shed lights the role of digital competence for instructors and learners, with a focus on the most disadvantaged. Accordingly, two study populations, comprised of educators and learners were established for the research, which used a qualitative and inductive approach. The project collected information in four countries (Italy, Spain, Sweden and the UK) through 6 focus groups (29 educators), 23 semi-structured individual interviews (52 educators) and 9 interactive focus groups (80 VET students).

Based on the analysis of information from these interviews and focus groups, a flexible competence framework for educators has been developed, which describes competences to enhance the use digital tools to work with vulnerable groups, in order to improve in turn learners’ digital competence. The information obtained from participants also shed light on how educators were forced to adapt quickly to online learning environments. Educators described how their teaching methods needed adaption, especially with regard to participation/attention. Respondents pointed out that the skills needed by learners vary depending on how they access digital learning material. In addition, the project found that some educators are intimidated by technology: they feel that they are judged on their technical ability rather than their knowledge of the subject matter.

Based on the needs and issues described by participants, the project has generated a competence framework for educators, and also developing a short training course, which is currently in pilot testing phase, to promote the competences in the framework. The FLEXI-COMP framework and training are based on knowledge and skills in three dimensions: 1. Basic digital competences. 2. Empowerment of digital competences for learners. 3. specific competences for working with vulnerable and disadvantaged learners. These dimensions are related to 8 main skills and knowledge domains, divided into 28 specific areas of digital competence in total, which are described in the paper.
Digital competences, Soft Skills, Competence Framework, Teachers, Students.