SELFIE for Teachers: new tool under development to support teacher digital capacity

Educators increasingly require a specific set of digital competences for their teaching practice and their own professional learning. The public health crisis and the shift to remote teaching and learning has resulted in teachers in Europe and around the world becoming more familiar with the potential and also challenges of using digital technologies for learning.

As part of the new Digital Education Action Plan 2021-2027, the Commission is developing a free online tool for primary and secondary teachers. The tool, ‘SELFIE for Teachers’ will allow teachers to reflect on and review how they are using technology in their professional practice and to get suggestions for further development.

A pilot version of the tool is currently being tested with teachers in Portugal, Estonia, Lithuania, Italy and Ireland. We are gathering feedback from the teachers through focus groups and feedback surveys on what works well and where the tool could be further improved. SELFIE for Teachers will be finalised over the summer and made available in the 24 official EU languages in autumn 2021.

How will SELFIE for Teachers work?

Teachers, from Europe or any country in the world, will be able to sign up on the platform where they answer anonymously a series of statements and questions on technology use in different areas of their professional practice. The questions will take around 20 minutes to complete.

Questions are in the following areas:

  • Teaching and learning - designing learning experiences which embed technology to support, for example. student collaboration and self-directed learning  
  • Digital resources - how teachers look for digital resources, use these or create their own resources, how they handle copyright and GDPR issues
  • Empowering learners - how technology is used to personalise student learning, engage students in their learning process and open up new, real world contexts and hands-on activities
  • Assessment - how  technology is used for formative and summative assessment and student feedback
  • Professional engagement - using technology to communicate and collaborate, for professional learning and reflective practice,   
  • Facilitating student digital competence: helping develop student digital skills

After reflecting on and completing the SELFIE for Teachers questions and statements, the teachers will receive an automatically generated report which indicates their strengths and weaknesses in each area with suggestions on how they could level up. Teachers can see for each of the six areas what their level is from ‘beginner’ to ‘innovator’. It is not expected that teachers will reach innovator level in all areas. Technology is always changing and the goal is to continue to develop in each of the different areas. Using the tool can be a good first step to identify strengths and to pinpoint where further professional development and support is needed. The tool is being designed so it can  be used by individual teachers or by a team of teachers working together. Each teacher completes the self-reflection and then the anonymous aggregated results are shared with the group. This can help facilitate education and training planning within a school, group of schools or municipality.

All teachers completing their self-reflection will be able to get a digital badge for their participation.  

SELFIE for Teachers is part of the Commission’s efforts to support teacher digital capacity and enhance learning in the digital age. Supporting teacher digital competences is an essential goal of the European Commission’s Digital Education Action Plan.

SELFIE for Teachers is designed for primary and secondary teachers and is based on the European Framework for the Digital Competence of Educators.

Graph showing how the assessments are conducted merging competences of educators and learners

SELFIE for Teachers will allow teachers to dive deeper in their own digital practice and use the results from their self-reflection to plan on how they can level up their digital competences. At the same time it can facilitate their school (or region or professional network) to develop a digital action plan to support the use of digital technologies in teaching and learning.

SELFIE for Teachers can be used in conjunction with other tools, notably SELFIE for Schools. SELFIE for Schools focuses the school as a whole and gathers views from teaching staff, students and school leaders on technology use. These views can help a school plan how and where they will use technology and plan for improvement.