Finland: a new national media education policy
A comprehensive, high-quality and systematic media education, targeting all groups of people: this is the objective of the Finnish national media education policy, published on 16 December 2019
This new policy updates extends the media literacy guidelines published in 2013 and aims to present the vision, the objectives and the current state of media education in Finland. The National Audiovisual Institute (KAVI) has worked in collaboration with the Ministry of Education and Culture to draft this policy, based on a online survey, planning workshops and interviews with professors.
The three main objectives of the national policy:
- A comprehensive media education in terms of content, perspectives, targeted groups and geographic distribution. For instance, networking and optimisation of digital opportunities should be encouraged as well as the utilisation of strengths of the different actors and the sharing of results.
- A high quality media education: it must be meaningful and non-discriminatory, based on research and international collaboration. Evaluation practices of media education are developed, and actions are improved based on evaluation. The media competences and skills of media educators shall be improved.
- A systematic media education: consistency must be a key objective. It requires for instance planning, institutionalisation and sustainability of knowledge and financial bases.
The current state in Finland:
- The data collected from the large online survey reflected the different kinds of needs among the society. Although Finland can rely on a strong tradition and expertise in this field and the support from the public, challenges remain regarding the cultural and social trends (media use, social polarisation…), the lack of resources and some regional inequalities observed.
- Media education is part of the National Core Curriculum through a multisectoral and multi-disciplinary approach as media education is included in all forms of versatile activities (school teachers, museum workers, researchers, library workers…).
The new policy highlights the importance of cross-sectoral collaboration and the need to take into account all groups and ages of the society.
The different actors involved in media education in Finland are encouraged to review their objectives and proposals in line with this new policy, starting with the central government (the Ministry of Education and culture, the Ministry of transport and communications, the Ministry of Justice, the Prime Minister’s office, KAVI, the National Agency for Education, the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority, the Digital and Population Data Services Agency and the Finnish Heritage Agency).