20 August 2013
ICDL (International Computer Driving Licence), known as ECDL (European Computer Driving Licence) in Europe, has been chosen by almost 13 million people in 150 countries to certify their digital skills since its establishment in 1996.
In 2008, ECDL Foundation, the global certifying authority of the ICDL programme, established ICDL Africa as an initiative to guide the implementation of ICDL in an African context.
In May 2013, New ICDL was officially launched globally by ECDL Foundation – and today it is being launched in Kenya, at the first ICDL Africa Forum, in Nairobi.
New ICDL is a major revision of the programme, developed to reflect technology changes and labour market requirements.
The key changes to the programme include more flexibility, more suitability to lifelong learning and a wider range of modules. New ICDL offers a more flexible certification with the introduction of ICDL Profile. ICDL Profile allows candidates to build a profile of modules best suited to them. In this way, it is possible to get certified in the skills that a particular job or study requires. Additionally, new modules and a new module structure have been created to allow candidates choose from a range of modules, which now includes Online Collaboration and IT Security.
A testament to the success of the ICDL initiative in Africa is the continually growing network of ICDL Accredited Test Centres – which currently numbers more than 500, and now spans 22 territories in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Kenya has rapidly become a shining light for ICDL Africa’s operations (with almost 70 test centres there alone), and it provides an example of best practice for operations in other territories. Due to the suitability of the programme as a solution for Kenya’s national ICT skills needs, ICDL was written into Kenyan law in 2009, being formally recognised as the national “entry-level computer certification designed to demonstrate competence in computer use.”
As well as being the official launch of New ICDL in Kenya, this day marks the formal launch of New ICDL for all of East, Central, and West Africa, with delegates attending from across those regions.