ICDL KSA supports Kingdom’s efforts to promote digital literacy in education sector

March 24, 2009
ICDL Saudi Arabia, the governing body and certification authority of the International Computer Driving License (ICDL) programme in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), has announced that it is complementing its efforts in line with the objectives of the Saudi Government's "Tatweer" initiative which was launched to promote digital literacy in the Kingdom's education sector. In line with this, ICDL Saudi Arabia is focused on enhancing computer competency among teachers and workers in the education sector by helping them obtain ICDL certification, and establishing a unified standard for all teachers to measure their skills in using computers and various computer applications.

The ICDL certificate is internationally recognised by ministries of education, universities and governmental organisations, and has been adopted in more than 168 countries and in more than 40 languages. It has also become an essential criterion in international job markets, including GCC countries and particularly Saudi Arabia.

Under the guidance of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, the Tatweer initiative has been implemented by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as part of massive efforts aimed to improve the competency of the national labour force and to support the development process in various sectors. Further, ICDL Saudi Arabia has suggested the launching of a program in cooperation with Tatweer that will train the principals and teachers of various schools for boys and girls, helping them obtain ICDL certification that will guarantee their IT expertise and competency.

ICDL KSA is leading the Kingdom’s efforts to promote digital literacy in the society, aiming to enhance the work performance in various organisations and authorities from the private and public sectors. This is achieved by providing special training courses for all, particularly private and public sector employees, for them to obtain the ICDL certificate. This will ensure that they have the proper skills to use the computer and its various applications and be able to work more productively amid a rapidly developing and evolving society.

ICDL KSA has already achieved several breakthroughs in its quest to promote digital literacy in the Kingdom, including the remarkable feat of improving by 100 per cent the number of ICDL certificate holders in 2008, compared to the previous year. In addition, various universities, private organisations and public entities such as the King Saud University, Princess Noura University, KSA Ministry of Economy and Saudi Post, have adopted the ICDL program, aiming to enhance IT infrastructure and promoting investments in new fields such as eTraining and eLearning services and the "Smart Cities" development concept.

In recent months, Tatweer has launched several initiatives such as the Educational Leadership Training Program, which aims to enhance the qualifications in the field of educational leadership and develop appropriate skills in technology.

ICDL is a comprehensive IT literacy standard that enables individuals to learn the principles of using computers and its basic applications. ICDL is based on unified international standards that emphasise on basic IT skills such as using computers, file management, word processing, spreadsheets, databases, presentations, and information and communication applications.

The KSA’s ICT sector has been witnessing unprecedented growth in recent years, with expenditures in the sector forecast to reach USD 3.8 billion in 2010.