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The Joint Research Centre (JRC) is the European Commission's science and knowledge service which employs scientists to carry out research in order to provide independent scientific advice and support to EU policy.
The impact of digital technologies, content and processes can be seen in all educational sectors (e.g., schools, higher education and also informal and non-formal learning), affecting all aspects of the educational value chain (e.g., curricular reform, teaching and learning practices, assessment, initial and continuing teacher professional development) and encompassing all educational actors (teachers, learners, school leaders).
Digital technologies are enablers of a step change in learning and teaching practices; however, they do not guarantee it. To consolidate progress and to ensure scale and sustainability, education institutions need to review their organisational strategies, in order to enhance their capacity for innovation and to exploit the full potential of digital technologies and content.
Several frameworks and self-assessment tools are in use in a number of European countries, but no attempt has hitherto been made to develop a pan-European approach to organisational digital capacity. A European reference framework that adopts a systemic approach can add value by promoting transparency, comparability and peer-learning.
The DigCompOrg framework can be used by educational organisations (i.e., primary, secondary and VET schools, as well as higher education institutions) to guide a process of self-reflection on their progress towards comprehensive integration and effective deployment of digital learning technologies.
DigCompOrg can facilitate transparency and comparability between related initiatives throughout Europe, and it can also play a role in addressing fragmentation and uneven development across the Member States.
DigCompOrg can also be used as a strategic planning tool for policymakers to promote comprehensive policies for the effective uptake of digital learning technologies by educational organisations at regional, national and European level. It can also be used as a means to create awareness about the systemic approach needed for effective use of digital learning technologies.
The European Reference Framework of Digitally Competent Educational Organisation is an initiative of the European Commission, Directorate General for Education and Culture (DG EAC). Research and design of the Framework was carried out by the Joint Research Centre - Institute for Prospective Technological Studies (JRC-IPTS).
Representatives of the EU Member States supported the development of the Framework through the Working group on Digital and online learning (WG DOL). Experts involved in the development of existing frameworks and self-assessment questionnaires promoting the use of digital technologies in education and training systems provided contributed also to the development of DigCompOrg.
The Europe 2020 strategy acknowledges that Education and Training (E&T) have a strategic role to play for Europe to remain competitive, overcome the current economic crisis and grasp new opportunities. Digital transformation of E&T systems is present in several Europe 2020 flagship initiatives, and boosting digital skills and online learning is among the priorities of President Juncker.
Also, the European Commission’s Opening up Education initiative emphasises the need for educational institutions to review their strategies in order to integrate digital technologies in their teaching, learning and organisational practices.