MOOC “Cyber-social citizen” is launched by the Portuguese Safer Internet Centre

In June 2021, a new massive open online course (MOOC) “Cidadão CiberSocial” (Cyber-social citizen) was launched and made available to Portuguese citizens by the Portuguese Safer Internet Centre. The course provides best practices and guidelines for the safe use of social media, to improve cybersecurity and help ensure user privacy.

Date 2021-06-30 Author Portuguese Safer Internet Centre Section awareness Topic data privacy, media literacy/education Audience children and young people, parents and carers

The course was presented at C-days 2021, an annual event (held online for this edition) that aims to promote the debate around cybersecurity. This event, which is already a national milestone bringing together professionals, academics, decision-makers and stakeholders in general, this year focused on the theme "Naturalising skills". It especially considered cybersecurity as a natural concern for the country, and the corresponding "know-how" as something to be assimilated during the first years of education, while also being implemented in companies and public administration bodies.

The use of social media has increased sharply in recent years, but such use comes with some associated risks. The course provides an overview of the main social media platforms to highlight the best practices in their use to improve cybersecurity and to help ensure user privacy.

If on the one hand, technology is more accessible to all generational groups due to its ease of handling, we know, on the other hand, that given its complexity, it is important to provide citizens with skills that allow them to take advantage of tools, such as social media, in a positive, inclusive, safe and healthy way so they do not become a ‘black box’

Teresa Sofia Castro

The MOOC is free of charge and is aimed at citizens aged over 14 years old. You can sign up for the course via this link. The Cyber-social citizen MOOC was designed based on up-to-date literature, social needs identified in the field, and data from recent research. “The times are changing, thus being able to adapt and use social media to collaborate and communicate are key competencies for the XXI century citizen”, explains Teresa Sofia Castro based on the ySKILLS report – a European Project that seeks to understand the (digital) skills that youth need in the 21st century.

Cyber-social citizen is an interactive online course, useful for everyone who wants to learn more about social media – its phenomena, advantages, and risks. It is organised into five modules:

  • Module 1: Social media, popularity and attractiveness
  • Module 2: Privacy, security and personal data
  • Module 3: Netiquette, wellness and digital reputation
  • Module 4: Influencers, influence and marketing
  • Module 5: Final activities

At the end of each module, participants can test their knowledge and, upon completion of all the modules of the course, they can download their Certificate of Completion. Other MOOCs are available on the website, including ones titled Cyber-safe citizen, Cyber-informed citizen and Cyber-safe consumer.

Find out more about the work of the Portuguese Safer Internet Centre, including its awareness raising, helpline, hotline and youth participation services – or find similar information for Safer Internet Centres throughout Europe.

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