ICDL Foundation: Shaping Global Standards for Digital Literacy Certification.

ICDL Foundation is the entity responsible for establishing and maintaining the standards of the ICDL Certification, overseeing the curriculum, assessment criteria, and global framework.

ICDL Foundation supports the initiatives of National Operators in Europe, Americas and the Middle East and North African (MENA) territories from our headquarters in Dublin, Ireland and our ICDL Europe office in Brussels, Belgium. We have also established two regional operations – ICDL Africa (based in Rwanda) and ICDL Asia (based in Singapore). All ICDL operations work closely with regional, national and local partners to develop the global network of ICDL Accredited Test Centres.

Click on the relevant button below to find out more about ICDL in your region,

ICDL Foundation, a global influencer in digital literacy, has empowered over 17 million individuals worldwide through its flexible ‘Digital Skills Standard’ certification, bridging the digital divide and ensuring proficiency in the modern, technology-driven landscape.

At its core, ICDL Foundation is a global force driving digital literacy and proficiency. Our mission is to enable proficient use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) that empowers individuals, organisations and society, through the development, promotion, and delivery of quality certification programmes throughout the world. As a pivotal player in the digital skills landscape, ICDL Foundation is committed to bridging the digital divide and ensuring that individuals are well-equipped for the demands of the modern, technology-driven world.

As a non-profit social enterprise, ICDL benefits from the unique support of experts from national computer societies and partners worldwide to develop vendor-independent standards that define the skills and knowledge required to use digital technology effectively. We work with education and training partners, local and regional authorities, national governments, international development organisations as well as public and private sector employers in all sectors, in the delivery of our programmes.

  • Social Responsibility: as a not-for-profit organisation, we are committed to improving digital skills proficiency within society. Our certification programmes are designed to be accessible to all citizens, irrespective of age, gender, status, ability or race.
  • Quality Standards: ICDL’s certification programmes are designed, validated, and approved by academics and industry experts from around the world. We continually develop our range of certification programmes, in line with market needs and technological advancements.
  • Vendor Independence: our certification programmes give candidates the flexibility and freedom to acquire digital skills and confidently apply them in any software environment that they may be required to use.
  • Worldwide Quality Assurance: ICDL establishes and enforces Quality Assurance Standards, conducting regular audits to ensure consistent and high-quality programme delivery worldwide.

To contact ICDL Foundation

ICDL Foundation
Level 1, The Chase
Arkle Rd, Sandyford,
Dublin, Ireland

Tel: +353 1 6306000
Email: info@icdl.org

17,000,000+

Certified Candidates

20,000+

Test Centres

100+

Territories

40+

Languages

75,000,000+

Certification Tests

ICDL, (International Certification of Digital Literacy) is a globally recognised certification programme that verifies an individual’s proficiency in essential computer skills. ICDL has developed a diverse range of modules, from basic computer use, word processing, spreadsheets, databases, and online collaboration, to advanced digital skills for occupational effectiveness as well as new and emerging technologies. To obtain ICDL certification, individuals typically undergo training or self-study for the relevant modules and then take standardised tests to demonstrate their competence. The certification is awarded upon successful completion of these tests, providing a valuable credential that signifies a person’s ability to use digital tools effectively in various professional and personal contexts.

For individual interested in getting ICDL certified click here

ICDL Foundation has played a pivotal role in the development of DigComp, the European Commission’s digital competence framework. This framework serves as a common reference for digital competence in Europe, underlining ICDL’s commitment to shaping and refining digital skills on a broad scale. ICDL Foundation has been a driving force in shaping DigComp from its first version, contributing insights from our experience in certifying digital skills. We bring an employability and work- related skills perspective to DigComp and have developed a number of our programmes in line with competences featured in DigComp. Serving as a common reference for digital competence in Europe and other regions, DigComp aids individuals, organisations, and policymakers in identifying and addressing digital competence gaps. ICDL’s active engagement in refining DigComp underscores its commitment to fostering digital skills on a broad scale.

For full details on how ICDL maps to DigComp read more

Perception and Reality: Measuring Digital Skills Gaps in Europe, India, and Singapore

The Perception and Reality: Measuring Digital Skills Gaps in Europe, India, and Singapore publication is a comprehensive study that sheds light on the prevalent misconceptions surrounding digital literacy. Through extensive research and analysis, this paper identifies the disparities between perceived digital skills and actual competency levels in these regions, highlighting areas for improvement and strategies for bridging the gap. It serves as a valuable resource for policymakers, educators, and individuals seeking to understand and address the digital skills divide.

Skills for Data Protection

The Skills for Data Protection paper offers invaluable insights into safeguarding personal information in an age of increasing digitalisation. With data breaches and privacy concerns on the rise, this publication provides practical guidance on implementing effective data protection measures, covering topics such as encryption, access control, and compliance with regulatory standards. It equips individuals and organisations with the knowledge and tools necessary to mitigate risks and protect sensitive data from unauthorised access or exploitation.

IT Security Skills: Protecting Your Children, Your Private Life, and Your Business

IT Security Skills: Protecting Your Children, Your Private Life, and Your Business paper addresses crucial aspects of online safety, offering practical advice and best practices for safeguarding personal and professional digital assets. In an increasingly interconnected world, where cyber threats pose significant risks to individuals, families, and businesses, this publication serves as a comprehensive guide to mitigating vulnerabilities and protecting against cyberattacks. It emphasises the importance of proactive security measures, such as strong passwords, encryption, and security awareness training, to safeguard against potential threats and breaches.

The Fallacy of the ‘Digital Native’

The Fallacy of the ‘Digital Native’ challenges assumptions about innate digital proficiency, emphasising the need for structured digital education. Contrary to popular belief, being born into a digital era does not automatically translate to proficiency in using technology effectively. This publication highlights the importance of providing comprehensive digital literacy training and education programs to equip individuals with the skills and knowledge needed to navigate the digital landscape confidently. By debunking the myth of the ‘digital native,’ it underscores the critical role of formal digital education in empowering individuals and societies to thrive in an increasingly digitalised world.

Creating the Future: Computing in Education

Computing and digital literacy are two sides of the same coin that both need to be included in compulsory education. In this special report, ICDL Foundation argues strongly that students should have the opportunity to develop computing skills and to build a strong foundation of digital literacy. 

We need a comprehensive digital education for every school pupil. When digital skills are becoming ever more crucial to all areas of life, from work and learning, to social inclusion, there can be no excuse for leaving anyone behind.

ICDL: Alignment with UN Sustainable Development Goals

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a set of 17 global goals adopted in 2015, aiming to address various social, economic, and environmental challenges by 2030. These goals encompass areas such as poverty, health, education, gender equality, clean energy, climate action, and more, providing a universal framework for global cooperation and progress towards a sustainable future.

ICDL Foundation aligns with several United Nations SDGs by contributing to the development of digital literacy and skills, which are integral to achieving broader societal and economic objectives. Specifically, ICDL supports SDG 4 (Quality Education) by promoting digital skills education, SDG 5 (Gender Equality) by fostering inclusivity in technology, and SDG 8 (Decent Work and Economic Growth) by enhancing employability through digital proficiency. Additionally, ICDL’s focus on digital competence aligns with SDG 9 (Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure) and SDG 10 (Reduced Inequalities), contributing to a more equitable and technologically advanced global society.

SDG 4Quality EducatioN

ICDL promotes digital literacy and skills development, contributing to the goal of ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education by enhancing students’ proficiency in essential computer skills.

SDG 5Gender Equality

ICDL plays a role in fostering gender equality in the technology sector by providing opportunities for both men and women to acquire and demonstrate digital skills, contributing to a more inclusive workforce.

SDG 8Decent Work and Economic GrowtH

By enhancing employability through digital proficiency, ICDL supports the goal of promoting sustained, inclusive, and sustainable economic growth, aligning with efforts to achieve decent work for all.

SDG 9 Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure

ICDL’s focus on digital competence contributes to advancements in industry and innovation, supporting the development of modern, technologically advanced infrastructure.

SDG 10Reduced Inequalities

ICDL helps bridge the digital divide by providing standardised digital skills training, contributing to the goal of reducing inequalities in access to technology and opportunities for personal and professional growth.

SDG 17Partnerships for the Goals

ICDL collaborates with various stakeholders, including educational institutions and businesses, fostering partnerships to advance the common goal of building a digitally proficient global community.

Our mission revolves around enabling proficient use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT), empowering individuals, organisations, and societies globally. Through the development, promotion, and delivery of quality certification programmes, ICDL contributes to building a digitally competent global community. Our expertise is validated through independent studies, endorsements from esteemed organisations like UNESCO and UNICEF, and practical applications highlighted by JRC in Poland. This comprehensive overview below articulates ICDL’s mission, integration with the DigComp framework, independent validation, and strategic alignment with specific SDG targets, presenting a compelling case for collaboration with governments, partners, and NGOs. 

 

: The depth of ICDL’s coverage of DigComp has been independently validated. A 2018 study by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics revealed that ICDL comprehensively covered DigComp more than eight other international digital literacy frameworks or schemes. This recognition underscores ICDL’s effectiveness in addressing global digital literacy needs.

UNESCO’s recognition of ICDL as part of the Global Framework of Reference for Digital Literacy Skills is a testament to our global impact. ICDL stands out among frameworks worldwide, with 177 learning outcomes mapped to digital skills competence areas—the highest among frameworks included in UNESCO’s 2018 UNESCO Institute for Statistics report, which validates ICDL’s comprehensive coverage of DigComp, surpassing eight other international digital literacy frameworks.

UNICEF’s endorsement of DigComp for its own digital literacy strategy for children further strengthens ICDL’s position. The alignment of ICDL with both DigComp and the Digital Kids Asia-Pacific framework is acknowledged, emphasizing the versatility and compatibility of our framework.

The Joint Research Centre’s ‘DigComp in Action’ publication highlights ICDL’s practical application in skills development projects. The practical application of ICDL in skills development projects showcases the real-world impact of our initiatives.

Don’t just take our word for it! More than 17 million people are now ICDL certified across the world. Scroll through the testimonials below to understand how ICDL Certification has benefited them.

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