On February 27 and 28, the Working Group (WG) for Digital and Entrepreneurial Competencies met for the fifth time in Zenica, to finalize the Handbook for Digital and Entrepreneurial Competencies for Teachers. The Handbook was created with the intention of training entrepreneurial and digitally competent teachers who can apply it in their daily work.
Through the efforts of this Working Group, the European Union project Education for Employment in BiH attempted to develop a model for integrating entrepreneurial and digital competencies into BiH educational curricula. This WG, in collaboration with six additional expert working groups, also developed and specified learning objectives for primary and secondary schools that include these two competencies, which were approved by the project Steering Committee.
“One of the goals of our project was to familiarize educational institutions, particularly teachers and students, with the two EU frameworks for entrepreneurial and digital competencies. Today, the student represents the centre of the entire teaching process, and all curricula’s learning outcomes must include digital and entrepreneurship competencies,” Vesna Puratić, an expert on entrepreneurial competence at the Education for Employment in Bosnia and Herzegovina project, explained at the meeting in Zenica.
Aida Džaferović, expert adviser for professional and adult education in the Ministry of Civil Affairs (MoCA) BiH’s Education Sector and a member of this WG, is also pleased with the activities and subjects addressed by this WG.
“Entrepreneurial and digital competencies can be called the competences of the 21st century! Individuals are no longer competitive on the employment market without them, and it can significantly reduce their employability. Having this in mind, I believe that this WG did a good job and that we generated excellent and useful documents. After the project is completed, the key is in the subsequent execution, because the document that stays in the drawer loses value. As a result, we truly hope that the educational authorities will acknowledge our efforts and the high quality of the documents produced, and that they will properly use them”, Aida Džaferović stated.
She also stressed how productive and homogeneous the WG for Digital and Entrepreneurial Competencies was. Members got along great and swiftly achieved agreement on all topics. This demonstrates that the requirements and problems are comparable, and that there is a common goal in BiH’s educational institutions to develop these competencies.
“The activity of working groups is crucial for exchanging information, experiences, and needs. Hearing the opinions, needs, and visions of colleagues who have direct responsibility in the field of education is very important from the perspective of the MoCA BiH, which has a coordinating role in this field, as it allows us to gain insight and create a roadmap for our future activities“, added Aida Džaferović.
Following the meeting in Zenica, the completed Handbook for Digital and Entrepreneurial Competences will be presented for approval to the project’s Steering Committee and then made accessible for use by educational authorities in Bosnia and Herzegovina. If the project is extended, the actions and outcomes of the WG for Digital and Entrepreneurial Competences could go one step further, as Vesna Puratić suggests:
“The only thing lacking for the time being is a training for primary and secondary school teachers in these areas, for which lessons have been created and emphasized in our handbook. In case of project extension this training could be implemented and, in addition, we could develop a model for identifying talented students, with a focus on the aforementioned competencies, which is currently in the draft phase.”
The Working Group for Entrepreneurial and Digital Competences, composed of representatives of educational authorities from all over Bosnia and Herzegovina, began its work in September 2021 with the aim of including the aforementioned competences in the teaching curriculum, in accordance with current educational trends and EU recommendations.
By receiving digital and entrepreneurial training in the education system, students develop competencies that help them better adapt to the modern labour market. As a future labour force, they also develop a more proactive approach in solving everyday challenges in the work environment.
In order to overcome the high unemployment rate and a huge mismatch of the education and training systems with the demands of the labour market, the EU funded project “Education for Employment, BiH” aims to produce human resources in line with the labour market needs in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The project assists BiH authorities in improving capacity and structure for planning the educational process and quality of educational outcomes.