Google launches Arabic online safety course for teachers

The digital citizenship course is found on the Google for Education website.
Updated 08 February 2018
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Google launches Arabic online safety course for teachers

On Safer Internet Day — February 6 — Google announced the launch of an online safety course in Arabic (g.co/DigitalCitizenshipCourseAR). The course is designed to help teachers and parents learn how to create a safe and positive experience online for students. By taking the course, teachers will learn how to integrate online safety learning and activities into their classroom curriculum. Google also published localized video tutorials on YouTube that will offer children online safety tips like how to protect their devices, how to strengthen their sign-ins and how to avoid scams.
The digital citizenship course, which is found on the Google for Education website, focuses on four areas:
l Safety on the go — importance of strong passwords, how locking the mobile device helps protect personal information, how to avoid potentially harmful downloads, understanding the difference between private and public WiFi networks, and how to use the latter safely.
l Safe browsing — how to distinguish between legitimate and dubious sources of information and how to incorporate best practices to critically evaluate online sources of information.
l Safety from phishing and scams — how to recognize potential scams that happen on the web and through email, learning how to avoid them, understanding what encryption is, and how to check if a web page is encrypted.
l Online reputation management — understanding why privacy matters, how to help students identify and report inappropriate behavior, and help them think about how to conduct themselves online, even in the face of difficult situations.
Joyce Baz, head of communications at Google in MENA, said: “As people do more online everyday, they need to be able to connect and explore the web with confidence and trust to get the most out of it. We want to build a safer web for everyone so that it remains a positive, safe place that inspires everyone to do and discover more. We take online safety and the safety of the Internet seriously with our products, tools, shared resources, as well as industry partnerships.”
According to a 2017 YouGov poll that surveyed 1000 millennials (ages 18-30) in the UAE, 56 percent of respondents said their parents or school teachers never spoke to them about the importance of strong passwords and online safety (54 percent in Saudi Arabia, 60 percent in Egypt).


J-PAL boosts refugee education

Updated 20 May 2018
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J-PAL boosts refugee education

The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is launching a new scheme to help refugees access higher education in development economics. 

The goal of this new collaboration is to empower refugees through training that will enable them to leverage their local knowledge, build their technical skills, and become experts in the fields of development economics and public policy. 

Starting in the summer of 2018, J-PAL is teaming up with MIT’s Refugee Action (ReACT) initiative to provide access for selected refugees to the online MicroMasters program in Data, Economics and Development Policy (DEDP) offered by J-PAL and MIT’s Department of Economics. ReACT, which aims to connect refugees with higher education, will sponsor selected learners and provide access to five online MicroMasters DEDP courses on development economics; in-person workshops on business skills, and paid internships to put their skills into practice. 

Hassan Jameel, president of Community Jameel Saudi Arabia, said: “Education and learning are fundamental to a strong society, and providing access to MIT’s MicroMasters is a foundation upon which to rebuild the disrupted education and careers of refugees worldwide. 

“Building on computer science and entrepreneurship support for refugees in Jordan, this collaborative effort between J-PAL, MIT and ReACT creates another bespoke learning opportunity for refugees, opening doors and knocking down barriers to higher education for learners.” 

A MicroMasters is a professional and academic credential, accredited by MITx, MIT’s online learning platform, and offers individuals a route to applying for a full master’s degree program at MIT or other universities. 

The new initiative uses a carefully crafted model of blended learning — with financial support for online courses and in-person workshops, as well as strong emphasis on community building — to specifically target and overcome the educational challenges facing refugees. This track within ReACT aims to provide refugees with the tools they need to engage as technical experts with the problems facing their communities.