Digitalization of teaching and learning environments in general education

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The steering and management of digitalization are fragmented, and the knowledge base is insufficient. The Ministry of Education and Culture and the Finnish National Agency for Education should clarify the responsibilities and duties of the actors participating in the digitalization as well as the operating models, and also improve the knowledge base.

The National Audit Office of Finland (NAOF) has audited how the teaching and learning environments of general education are steered and managed in central government. In the audit, it was evaluated what kinds of capabilities the different actors have, through steering and management, to promote well-operating, balanced and developing digitalization that supports learning. Digitalization refers to conscious and goal-oriented reform of the practices and processes of teaching and learning by the use of digital tools.

The digitalization of teaching and learning environments has been subsidized in 2007–2018 by about EUR 280 million out of state funds in a total of 2,900 projects.

The audit found that, with the existing knowledge basis, it is difficult for those steering the digitalization to anticipate or ensure that the steering, goals and means are efficient and effective.  The knowledge base does not support the evaluation of their efficiency and effectiveness in retrospect, either. There are two reasons for this: digital teaching and learning environments are a new and complex factor in general education, and there are weaknesses in the information and knowledge management related to teaching and learning environments. In addition, the premises for the steering and financing of digitalization are fragmented and partly contradictory.

The Ministry of Education and Culture and the Finnish National Agency for Education should clarify the responsibilities and duties of the actors participating in the digitalization as well as the operating models. To make it possible to select appropriate operating models and also to evaluate them in retrospect, the Ministry and the Finnish National Agency for Education should develop both the production of new digitalization-related information and the collection, utilization and evaluation of existing information and knowledge together with different stakeholders, such as universities and the Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities.

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URN:ISBN:978-952-499-461-3