Under Germany’s G20 presidency in 2017, the initiative #eSkills4Girls was launched to improve digital skills and employment perspectives for girls and women in particular in low income and developing countries. As part of the initiative,a report was published which examines the factors that influence the pathways of girls and women who aspire to enter, are transitioning to, or are currently working within the digital economy. At their summit in Hamburg, the G20 committed to promote education, employment, and entrepreneurship opportunities for women and girls in the digital economy and society in low income and developing countries and decided to set up a platform (www.eskills4girls.org) to collect and disseminate information and knowledge and to promote exchange between different actors on how to overcome the gender digital divide.
The role of teachers and educators:
• Female teachers and educators using ICT in teaching and learning act as role models to girls throughout their educational journey. Such role models help alleviate the negative societal expectations of girls using ICT and support greater aspirations for careers in ICT for girls. To ensure this, there needs to be dedicated support and empowerment of female teachers to integrate technolo- gy in their daily teaching practices.
• Building awareness and capacity of teachers and educators to facilitate appropriate gender sensitive interventions can help to address the challenges around equity of access to technology in the learning process that supports digital skill acquisition for girls.
• Consideration must be taken with regard to the design and implementation of teacher and educator training programmes to ensure that the outcomes of these programmes focus inclusively on pedagogy, technology, subject matter, and gender.
• Stakeholders implementing programmes focusing on gender equity and equality, ICT and teacher devel- opment must continue to broaden the evidence base of what is working to guide educational policy and programming at national levels.
• The role of Ministries of Education and Youth is essential to mainstream initiatives that support teachers
and educators address challenges around gender equality, ICT, and digital skill acquisition for girls.
Gender-sensitivity in curricula
• Authentic gender inclusion in the ICT learning system and curriculum requires recognition of social issues such as gender stereotypes and especially unconscious bias around women and ICTs. is will ensure that initiatives are gender-sensitive in their architecture and do not widen the ICT gender gap.
• Gender-neutral content, language, and teaching modality are major aspects that need to be incorporated in the digital learning system by various stakeholders, especially teachers.
• Digital literacy content needs to tackle gender stereotypes, but also needs to be inspirational to empower women and girls to learn about topics that are of interest to them. e involvement of women who are in this eld as content creators is one way of ensuring this happens but also training other stakeholders including men and boys on producing inclusive and empowering content is vital.
• Digital literacy programmes that promote active learning and participation through peer exchanges are a highly recommended modality of encouraging women and girls to learn ICTs. Active learning also contributes towards retaining more women in STEM.
• Gender sensitivity needs to be mainstreamed within the entire digital literacy curriculum design cycle, from con- tent development to teachers training. is calls for an investment in capacity development of all stakeholders from authors and content developers to educators and education ministries.
Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor. Read the whole story at #eSkills4Girls: how to integrate digital literacy in national education systems