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Digital (il)literacy and (in)security

PROGRAMS OF TECHNICAL CULTURE 2. IT CLASSES FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES

Digital (il)literacy and (in)security, in the era of the COVID19 virus pandemic, has led to changes in behavior and even greater importance, but also misuse of the digital world. In its public policies, the EU recognizes the importance of digital education for all groups.

Therefore, a “plan for digital education for all” was adopted at the EU level – Opinions of the European Committee of the Regions – Action Plan for Digital Education 2021-2027. Among other things, it “calls on the European Commission to actively promote the right of persons with disabilities to inclusive digital education, and encourages the Commission and member states to identify features of digital education, which are designed and adapted to persons with disabilities, invest in them and share them with each other; the education and skills needs of vulnerable groups should also be taken into account, and addressed by ensuring equal access to high-quality primary education” https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/HR/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX :52020IR4769&from=PL

The Republic of Croatia joined EU public policy initiatives and introduced several changes in the last few years, in order to increase digital literacy and safety for persons with disabilities, thus contributing to the inclusion of these groups:

“Digital accessibility is the practice of adapting websites, mobile applications and other digital content and services so that all users can access, use and understand them regardless of visual, hearing, motor or cognitive disabilities (temporary or permanent).

Digital accessibility starts from four basic principles that require that all users, regardless of their capabilities, can:

  • perceive information and components of the user interface (perception ability)
  • manage the user interface (operability)
  • understand information and how the user interface works (comprehensibility)
  • access content regardless of technology (stability).

 

In the Republic of Croatia, the principles of digital accessibility are incorporated into the Act on Accessibility of Websites and Software Solutions for Mobile Devices of Public Sector Bodies (Official Gazette, No. 17/2019). Public sector bodies are obliged to adapt their digital content, in order to create an inclusive society, which gives everyone equal opportunities to receive, send and use information in a digital environment. The law on the accessibility of websites and software solutions for mobile devices of public sector bodies is also available as an  audio track.“

Our contribution: IT classes for persons with disabilities in the “Daycare Center Friends”

 

  1. EXPLORE THE IT WITH DIP! A small school of IT, virtual literacy and virtual safety for persons with disabilities!
Knowing how to use IT and communication devices in everyday life is important for young people from socially excluded groups and persons with disabilities. In order for them to master the basic techniques of using IT and communication devices, for simple operations useful in everyday life that can also improve the quality of their lives, we started with a pilot test of the personal skills of our target group. After an insight into the needs, we designed a training program for digital competencies for these groups. The results of the pilot show that they have the opportunity to increase their competencies in order to be able to use applications for therapeutic and educational purposes, which can improve their quality of life. Likewise, our volunteers and students on internships often help users with smartphones, computers, Internet searches, or writing presentations or assignments for users of the Resource Center, who are included in our program. Students and volunteers, young people, will thus be involved in mentoring peer work, which will allow them to acquire both digital and pedagogical competencies and contribute to the strengthening of digital competences in the field of technical culture, informatics and communications. The goal of this activity is to increase practical knowledge and skills on how to use IT technology (computer, printer, screen, keyboard), basic applications, and safe Internet searches, especially social networks. People from these target groups are vulnerable to fraud, precisely because of their difficulties, so our goal is to empower them as much as possible.

 

Program work plan:

  • Familiarization workshops with hardware or parts of IT and communication devices (mobile phones, tablets) for young people with developmental difficulties, and children and young people; familiarization with keyboard, mouse, screen, printer; charger, card, screen); disassembly into parts, assembling and switching on the computer, connecting additional devices (printer)
  • Basic use of basic programs: installing basic programs, using basic work packages (Word, Office – documents, writing, reading, writing, reading, sending emails)
  • Basics of using mobile phones and smartphones, saving photos, etc.
  • Safe use of the Internet and social networks for target groups – security: answering calls from unknown numbers, inappropriate sites, parental safety; unknown “friends” and the like.
  • Testing acquired competences: a computer literacy competition for young persons with disabilities. Leaders: Sanja Crnković, certified ECDL examiner, IT specialist, member and volunteer; Bernard Šešo, psychologist, and others; Included: 30 DIP members and other interested citizens and persons with disabilities.

                                                  2. Development of an application for persons with disabilities

 

In this project, a draft plan is formed with variables (goals, results) to develop an “everyday” application for the target group. The results of monitoring the needs and analyzing the effectiveness of the program showed that it is necessary to systematically work on improving their competencies and use digital technology in order to improve the quality of life of socially excluded groups. Namely, persons with disabilities, including people with disorders from the autism spectrum and other combined difficulties, have better quality of life and participate more actively in independent life if they have structured activities (a detailed plan for each day) and support in this. What will it look like in practice? Be patient for a little while more and you’ll find out!

  • Development of a draft plan of including the elements needed for the development of an application under the working title “everyday plan” for young persons with disabilities and other socially excluded persons” – collaboration with a graduate student in computer science at the Technical Faculty in Rijeka and a psychologist. This year we plan to develop as many elements of the application structure as possible.
  • You will hear all about it when we start the piloting process. The DIP is a professional base and has been cooperating with the Community College of Rijeka for years, as well as the University of Rijeka, in setting challenges for students – socially useful learning (service learning – this is how another application was created for administering reports and other records that the Association must keep – it was a student’s MA thesis in the Community College of Rijeka. VM.)
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Adresa
  • Wenzelova 2/1
  • Rijeka, Hrvatska
  • OIB: 78171364712
  • MB: 4152115
  • ŽIRO RAČUN: ZAGREBAČKA BANKA
  • IBAN: HR7123600001102394295