What is SELFIE?

And how does it relate to resilience in the EU neighbourhood?

‘Empowerment’ is about acquiring the freedom and power to do what you want and control what happens to you. The digital transition has now meant that empowerment must also be digital. The digital empowerment of schools refers to increasing the competence of individuals and organisations to act as influential agents in the information society, and this is the focus of the  European Commission’s SELFIE Forum 2021 taking place 7 and 8 October. Amongst the high level speakers, policy makers and practitioners are representatives from ETF partner countries Ukraine and Serbia, together with the ETF Director Cesare Onestini, as panellist, and ETF Senior Expert in Digital Skills and Learning, Alessandro Brolpito.

The Forum is focusing on three main areas of SELFIE (Self-reflection on Effective Learning by Fostering the use of Innovative Educational technologies) which is a free tool designed to help schools embed digital technologies into teaching, learning and assessment SELFIE | Education and Training (

  • the SELFIE tool, which over the past three years has reached more than 1.8 million school leaders, teachers and students allowing them to self-reflect on their school’s digital capacity and its further development;
  • SELFIE WBL for work-based learning contexts, being launched at the Forum to improve coordination between VET schools and training companies and jointly embedding digital technology training and apprenticeship programmes;
  • SELFIE for TEACHERS, a self-reflection tool to facilitate the development of teachers’ digital competence which has already been used by more than 4.000 teachers in five countries during a pilot study and has been officially launched on the 5th of October 2021, on World Teachers’ Day.

The first priority in the European Commission’s Digital Education Action Plan 2021–2027 is ‘the development of a high-performing digital education ecosystem’. To achieve this, ‘effective digital capacity planning and development’ is underlined as ‘vital for education and training systems’.

SELFIE in the EU neighbourhood

The ETF supports policymakers in the EU neighbourhood to design and implement digital skills and learning strategies to modernise vocational education and training systems to meet today's challenges and opportunities. We have worked on the implementation of SELFIE in the SEET region, in Albania, Bosnia Herzegovina, Kosovo, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Turkey,  and in Georgia, Ukraine and Azerbaijan.

We have also just recently undertaken pilot projects of SELFIE for work-based learning in Georgia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey. It can help to make informed and collective decisions about strategy and practices at all levels to  ensure effective learning with the support of digital technology that helps improve resilience to adverse conditions and enhance the equality and equity of education and training.

SELFIE is also a community of interests and practice in which stakeholders from ETF partner countries can engage. The community facilitates dialogue amongst practitioners and within schools on the following eight potential areas for improvement:

selfie areas

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