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July 7, 2022
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Romanian News Social Tech

Study: 75% of Romanian Students Are Digitally Illiterate

As a recent report shows, Romanian students have a minimum functional level of digital skills.

The Romanian education system is considered outdated and poorly adapted to current needs, significantly affecting students. This report’s conclusion isn’t surprising because Romania doesn’t have a technology improved educational system. A worrying percentage of families in Romania have problems offering three meals a day for their children. When can we talk about digital skilled children in this kind of situation?

The reality is even worst, and besides Romanian students being digital illiterate, many children drop out of school due to poor conditions at home. Many young people no longer enrol in college.

When it comes to teachers and professors, Romania has the lowest number of teachers in the EU, and the majority of them are older and not ready for the digital era. During the pandemic years, when school hours have moved to the virtual environment, many teachers and professors encountered difficulties with meeting platforms. In other words, we can say that even Romanian teachers and professors are digitally illiterate in certain situations. This study is just the tip of the iceberg on the problems in the education system.

It should be noted that the project of President Klaus Johannis, Educated Romania, a project that he implemented a few years ago, does not bear fruit from what can be seen from the figures of this study.

Brio, an ed-tech platform approved by the Ministry of Education, announced the results of the first report on the digital literacy level of students in grades I-XII in Romania, in collaboration with the UiPath Foundation and with the support of the Romanian Commercial Bank (BCR) as a project implementation partner. The report examines the data gathered during the first seven months of Romania’s digital literacy test operation.

In interpreting the results, the literacy index generated by the test (a score ranging from 0 to 100) is classified into one of three levels of competence: “Non-functional” represents scores ranging from 0 to 50, “Minimum functional” represents scores ranging from 50 to 75, and “Functional” represents scores ranging from 75 to 100.

Only one-quarter of students in grades I-XII have functional digital literacy, which means they can work competently with information and digital content, communicate formally and informally online, and adapt to the audience. They understand specific and innovative rules related to protecting devices and personal information and the many opportunities that the internet provides and can create and edit various forms of content at an advanced level. 18% of students have a dysfunctional level of digital literacy. They can only use technology to perform simple and clearly explained tasks at a rudimentary level, making it difficult for them to participate in society through the internet and other digital media.

Romania needed a powerful and relevant tool to identify the level of digital skills in all age groups and to establish the necessary interventions. The data available so far at Eurostat did not include the 6-16 age group, which is especially important for education digitization policies. Society’s hope regarding the contribution of these age groups to the development of the Romanian economy is significant because they are part of an active educational system that can directly lead to a behaviour of use and development of digital skills. These are closely connected with students’ school performance, both in terms of access to correct and complete information and in terms of its use in various contexts and in different ways of delivery or transmission. The percentage of students in the 6-18 age range employed at a high functional level of digital literacy is only 25%. At this moment, the talent pool that Romanian employers will have to generate digital performance and productivity.

Prof. Univ. Dr. Dragoș Iliescu, Chief Scientist & Founder of Brio

For a better country, there must be highly educated people. How will Romania manage to create a better future when it does not educate its children properly. From all points of view, a well-developed educational system is the certificate of a capable nation to develop. When we pay more attention to this segment, which is crucial in developing a state, then Romania could grow.

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