The Media Coach Seminars aim at the training of youth professionals, teachers, librarians, youth workers so that they become professional Media Coaches.
The seminars are provided free of charge to a total of 100 people. The seminars have a total duration of forty hours and are delivered in a ten-week period.
The Role of the Media Coach in Europe and beyond
The profession of a Media Coach is a widespread, recognized and acclaimed profession in Northern European countries. Through the European Media Coach Initiative, this profession is currently transferred to the Greek reality.
The role of the Media Coach is to empower children and young people so that they explore, get to know and interpret the exciting world of new media but also understand the multiple challenges inherent in it. Media Coaches support children and youth to develop critical thinking skills for the use of the new media including social media. During the seminar, potential Media Coaches will develop knowledge and skills on issues such as:
- Cyber bullying
- Fake news and misinformation
- Algorithms and techniques for “extracting” information from social networks
- Influence of social networks on the mental and physical health of young people
- Sexualisation in social media
- Online gaming, challenges, etc.
It is worth noting that in the Netherlands alone, more than 4,000 people have attended and received certification as professional Media Coaches. These people currently work in schools, youth organizations and libraries by organizing and implementing interventions to inform, support and empower young people in the use of the new means of communication and information.
Digital Transformation for Children and Youth
Digital transformation is a reality that might be worrying for some people and alarming for others who fear the side effects that accompany the existing possibilities for the widespread dissemination of any type of information.
Education in the new media is related to the active participation of all people in society and constitutes the best answer to a number of new alarming phenomena such as cyberbullying, internet addiction, cyberstalking, hate speech, “fake news” and electronic propaganda.
The systematic guidance of children and young people in the critical use of the Media is imperative. The ultimate goal of Media Coach seminars is to improve the skills of children and young people on issues related to the use of the new electronic media, with an emphasis on the internet and social media. Media literacy refers to the skills and abilities that any citizen must have in order to search, manage, organize, analyze, evaluate and understand the amount of information found on digital media and technological applications.
To achieve this goal, Media Coach seminars aim at all those adults who, because of their job or role – either as teachers / teaching staff or as parents – come into daily contact with children and adolescents or shape their attitudes and their behaviors towards the media.
The project introduces for the first time in Greece the profession and the role of the Media Coach – based on the award-winning Dutch model. Instead of developing an intervention aimed directly at children and youth, the project targets adults [teachers, parents, counselors, etc.] who can act and provide information and support to young people on issues related to the use of the media.
The role of a Media Coach is primarily to inform and support children and youth in the use of the new media, highlighting both their benefits – in terms of information, education and active citizenship – and the potential risks involved. Especially in Greece, where incidents of privacy breaches and cyberbullying with victims mainly young women and underage girls are increasing alarmingly, information on such issues is imperative.
Media literacy is linked to democracy, it is a necessary response to the changing and increasingly complex media landscape while it is a valuable means for addressing radicalization and cultivating mutual respect.
Certification from the Dutch Media Rakkers
All those who will successfully participate in the Media Coach seminars will be certified by the Dutch organisation Media Rakkers.
Until today, Media Rakkers have trained and certified more than 4000 Media Coaches.
Learn Media Rakkers https://www.mediarakkers.nl/
Learn more about the Dutch Media Coach seminars https://www.nomc.nl/
The Content of the Seminar: Media Literacy
The seminar deals with the following subjects:
- Media Literacy – The Role of the Media Coach
- Privacy in the Online World
- Media Addictions
- Disinformation and Fake News
- Youth Identities in the Social Media
- Sexualisation and the New Media
- Online Games
- New Trends and the New Media
- Presentation of Action Plans
The Educational Methodology – Distance Learning Methodologies
The Media Coach seminars capitalize on the potential provided by distance learning methodologies, through the use of the e-learning platform of the Athens Lifelong Learning Institute https://eclass.athenslifelonglearning.gr/login/index.php
The Media Coach seminars are comprised of:
- 40 hours of synchronous online learning that will be delivered through 10 4-hour weekly sessions.
- asynchronous distance learning – during which participants can explore various issues media literacy issues.
The Media Coach seminars provide to all participants 10 online dossiers that delve into the issues of media literacy, privacy on the online world, media addictions, disinformation and fake news, cyber-bullying, sexualization of the media, online games and new media trends.
The European Project “European Media Coach Initiative”
The Media Coach seminars are delivered in the context of the European project “The European MediaCoach Initiative – EMCI” (Erasmus+, Key Action 3). The European Media Coach Initiative is a three-year project that promotes critical thinking in the new media and digital literacy. The project endorses the successful Dutch Media Coach initiative that was adopted by the Dutch educational system. The Dutch model will be replicated in the following 5 European countries: Greece, Cyprus, Portugal, Bulgaria and Romania.