“After few years of preparation and work, all our efforts are coming to fruition. Thanks to the partnership with UNESCO, the necessary material to allow students of primary and secondary schools in Bosnia and Herzegovina to receive an education in Media and Information Literacy is ready. We hope, they will help in making them active citizens and aware of the information, media and platform environment that surrounds them,” said Emir Vajzovic from the Faculty of the Political Sciences at the University of Sarajevo and UNESCO’s long-standing partner in the country.
The MIL curriculum and accompanying material for teaching have been developed by the University of Sarajevo, together with the respective Ministries of Education in 2 cantons and 1 entity, to support the piloting of Media and Information Literacy (MIL) in formal education in Bosnia and Herzegovina, within the framework of the UNESCO EU-funded project “Building Trust in Media in South East Europe and Turkey – Phase 2.” The piloting is planned to begin in 30 schools across the country at the end of the year 2021, preceded by librarian and teacher training programmes.
The MIL curriculum was developed based on the UNESCO MIL curricula and includes 12 modules adapted to the local context and supportive of digital transformation in teaching and learning.
“The MIL curriculum can be used in a way to allow teachers and librarians to use MIL in innovative ways in cross-curriculum approach in terms of method and content. Its overall objective is to foster education based not only on transfer of information and knowledge but that involves creation, thinking, and critical awareness. The curriculum is published in an online edition, as well as printed in 400 copies.” – Emir Vajzovic, Faculty of the Political Sciences at the University of Sarajevo
In parallel to this work and in order to have the support of the authorities of the country in this endeavour, a National MIL Policy and Strategy and MIL Position Paper have been drafted following five cross-sectoral multi-stakeholder consultations that took place throughout November and December 2020, as the final stage of the consultation process that started in 2018.”The aim of the workshops was to include a variety of stakeholders to initiate the articulation of specific cantonal/entity/national policies and strategies on the integration of MIL into formal, non-formal, and informal education systems, as well as across the society,” explained Emir Vajzovic.
The consultations gathered experts across disciplines, academics from public universities in the country, representatives of civil society organizations, and librarians of primary and secondary schools in the Sarajevo Canton and from the University of Sarajevo. In addition, one more position paper has been developed within the project to address the role of CSOs in the implementation of MIL policies and strategies in the country.
The approval of the relevant Ministries of Education at canton and entity levels has been received for the piloting of librarian and teacher training to take place in 30 schools in the country, in the Sarajevo Canton (5 primary and 5 secondary schools), Herzegovina-Neretva Canton (5 primary and 5 secondary schools) and Republika Srpska (5 primary and 5 secondary schools). The librarian and teacher training programmes will be conducted as of the academic 2021/2022 year.
Along with the piloting of MIL in formal education, the second phase of the UNESCO EU-funded project “Building Trust in Media in South East Europe and Turkey” is also piloting MIL in informal education by collaborating with youth organisations in South East Europe and Turkey. In addition, the project aims to support quality journalism in the fight against disinformation, as well as self-regulation mechanisms to ensure professional standards in media.