Skip to main content


EACEA National Policies Platform


6. Education and Training

6.8 Media literacy and safe use of new media

Last update: 18 March 2022
On this page
  1. National strategy
  2. Media literacy and online safety through formal education
  3. Promoting media literacy and online safety through non-formal and informal learning
  4. Raising awareness about the risks posed by new media

National strategy

Regional Development Concept (Regionales Entwicklungskonzept, REK)

IT and media literacy have been accepted into the second implementation phase of the Regional Development Concept (REK II), which is the legislative period 2014-2019, as a new future project. In the specialist literature the term "metaskill" is also used. In the information and knowledge society of the 21st century, media literacy is unquestionably a decisive factor for the success of the individual at school but also after leaving school, for example as an undergraduate, in research and at work. In addition, the acquisition of this core skill contributes decisively to the democratic development of our society. In terms of educational equity, all citizens of the German-speaking Community should have the opportunity to acquires media literacy appropriate to their needs in their professional and private environment and to continue to further develop these skills. This does not only involve being able to use the various electronic terminal devices but also critically analysing the wide range of media, acquiring differentiated research skills and becoming active creatively and artistically in this area. All citizens must be able to keep up with the changing circumstances in the world of media. This is a task for the whole of society which can only be achieved by the interaction of numerous actors. The framework plan-oriented guideline for the development of IT and media literacy which was published in the past legislative period presents a grid for teaching broken down by skills and age groups. This guideline reaches all pupils of the German-speaking Community from the nursery school to the school leaving certificate and also includes structured teacher training and development which plays a prominent role beyond the school structures. The Media Center of the German-speaking Community (Medienzentrum der Deutschsprachigen Gemeinschaft) regularly organises media events for all citizens. The staff collect information, create networks and see themselves as partners and advisors in all matters to do with the media.

In addition, the Media Center is networked with similar institutions in Belgium and abroad and the staff work closely with their colleagues in the Ministry who likewise have the aim of imparting media literacy. Thus the cross-sectional theme appears in the Strategic Plan on Youth (Jugendstrategieplan) again and is, as a REK II project, implemented jointly with the Media Centre and Teaching department.

Media literacy and online safety through formal education

Planned measures and work steps

The framework plan-oriented guideline on the teaching of IT and media literacy represents the basis in skill acquisition in primary and secondary schools. The media literacy acquired in this school training are intended to give them the ability for continued lifelong learning and to be the best possible preparation for the demands of training, everyday life, work and society.

On the basis of this guideline, alongside the target groups of pupils and teachers, all other groups of society in the German-speaking Community must also be reached to show up gaps in provision and if necessary close them. For this, providers must be networked and provision be made accessible in a structured way.

Socio-political orientation: sustainability and innovation

The cross-curricular orientation of the project makes possible lifelong learning in handling modern media and connectivity linking to the school training for all groups of the population of the German-speaking Community. Individual activities thus become part of the overall concept. which is designed for all target groups. Over and above that, the project creates the basis for mature participation in shaping society and thus contributes to making each individual's personality more resilient.

The double leadership of the project guarantees a synergistic approach and sustainable exchange. Schools that reach a large part of the population and have per se an immense task in media literacy teaching, are networked with the Media Center, which is by definition aimed at all citizens of the German-speaking Community, in order to work together and involve external partners inside and outside the German-speaking Community in the activities.

Promoting media literacy and online safety through non-formal and informal learning

Media work as the promotion of media literacy for critical and conscious use of the media is one of the focuses of the youth work.

The study "Experiences of Violence and Media Consumption in the German-speaking Community of Belgium" (Gewalterfahrungen und Medienkonsum in der Deutschsprachigen Gemeinschaft Belgiens) from the Criminological Research Center of Lower Saxony (Kriminologisches Forschungsinstitut Niedersachsen, KFN) conducted in 2010 shows that above all children and young people from precarious circumstances have a lot of devices such as televisions, games consoles etc. compared with their peers and thus have more frequently the opportunity to consume media that is not appropriate for their age and can increase the propensity to violence.

The Media Center has a wide range of possible projects on the subject of "Violence in the Media". However, disadvantages young people and families do not mostly come along to the Media Center. They are more likely to be reached by schools and youth facilities. The Media Center can first and foremost offer institutions material and specialist speakers on all aspects of media literacy.

Raising awareness about the risks posed by new media

In the past few years various studies have been conducted in the German-speaking Community to provide information on a range of topics. These have included drugs and addiction, social problems, media, violence and poverty.