The 2013 Constitution of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam and the 2005 Education Law do not mention the terms "educational technology (Edtech)" and "information and communications technology (ICT)". The term "information technology" appears in many legal documents without an explicit definition, for instance, in the 2005 Education Law (Article 40 and Article 45), the 2019 Education Law (Article 30); the 2015 Law on Cyberinformation Security (Article 2 and Article 18), the 2018 Law on Cybersecurity (Article 2 and Article 18), the 2003-2015 National Education for All (EFA) Action Plan. Similarly, the term "science and technology" is mentioned in the 2005 Education Law (Article 39), the 2013 Constitution of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam (Article 62), the 2018 Law on Cybersecurity (Article 3) without a description.
The 2006 Law on Information Security mentions and defines the term "information technology" as "a collection of scientific methods, technologies and modern technical tools to produce, transmit, collect, process, store and exchange information".
Distance learning is mentioned in the 2005 Education Law, in the 2019 Education Law (Article 43), however, no specific definition is provided. Moreover, Article 45 of the 2005 Education Law highlights distance learning as a form of continuing education. And Article 44 of the 2005 Education Law defines continuing education as "a form of education which enables people to learn while in-service, to learn continuously and for lifelong refinement of their personality, broadening their understanding, and for educational, professional, operational enhancement to improve their quality of life, employability, self-employability, and adaptation to the social life".
Distance learning is also mentioned in the 2003-2015 National Education for All (EFA) Action Plan.
Constitution and laws: According to Article 33 of the 2005 Education Law, the goal of professional upper secondary education is to train working people with basic knowledge and practical skills of a profession, to work independently and creatively, and to apply technology to work.
The 2019 Education Law tasks educational institutions to focus more on promoting science and technology activities specifically within Article 19. The law also seeks improve general educational methods by strengthening the application of information and communication technology in the educational process.
The 2006 Law on Gender Equality guarantees men and women equal opportunities to approach and apply science and technology, participate in training courses on science and technology, and disseminate their results of scientific and technological studies and patents.
The 2013 Constitution of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam gives a special place to the economy, society, culture, education, science, technology, and environment for national development in Chapter III. According to Article 61 of the 2013 Constitution, education development is a primary national policy for elevating the people's intellectual standards, training human resources and fostering talents. In contrast, Article 62 of the 2013 Constitution emphasises the development of science and technology for the country's socioeconomic development. Furthermore, it's the responsibility of the State to provide favourable conditions for everyone to participate in and enjoy benefits from scientific and technological activities.
The 2015 Law on Cyberinformation Security aims to protection of information and information systems in cyberspace from being illegally accessed, utilized, disclosed, interrupted, altered or sabotaged in order to ensure the integrity, confidentiality and usability of information.
The 2018 Law on Cybersecurity aims to regulate activities in cyberspace in order to ensure social order and safety; and the responsibilities of agencies, organizations and individuals involved.
Policies, plans and strategies: The vision of the 2003-2015 National Education for All (EFA) Action Plan was to move from quality to quantity, complete universal primary and universal lower secondary education, provide lifelong learning opportunities, mobilise full community participation, ensure effective management and resource mobilisation. Introducing information technology in education was also prioritised in the 2003-2015 National Education for All (EFA) Action Plan.
The 2011-2020 Education Development Strategy Plan promotes the use of ICT in education innovation management, and the development of continuing education programs on ICT for teaching and learning.
The Strategy for Vietnam's Youth Development for the period of 2021 – 2030 seeks to build a generation of Vietnamese youth who master science and technology as well as “effectively implement the digital transformation in the field of education and training.” The strategy aims to increase the number of science and technology projects presided over by young people and increase the number of young people working in science and technology organizations. All students who graduate from colleges and universities should leave with digital transformation skills. By 2030, at least half of the youth population should be proficient in using digital means for communication and for business purposes on the digital economy platform. The strategy also mentions the need to manage unethical, uncivilized, unhealthy, and violent behaviors of youth on online platforms.
The Education Department’s Implementation Plan for the Youth Development Strategy tasks the sector with the promotion of information technology application, digital transformation in education and training, complete development policies, online education and training methods, and managing education in the network environment. The plan promotes the role of lecturers, young teachers, pupils and students in digital transformation. Emphasis is applied on using materials from libraries and digital libraries, materials, learning materials, software, and online training programs.
The National Strategy for Development of the Digital Economy and Society to 2025 seeks to transform Viet Nam in to a digital society. In the education section, the plan provides multiple strategies for digitization. First, the ministry will organize and implement the Program on teaching and learning about digital skills and STEM/STEAM in primary and high school education. Teachers will be trained and equipped with enough equipment, robotics and software. Their knowledge and skills on digital transformation and digital skills should be improved. Educational institutions should coordinate with organizations and businesses to provide hands-on digital skills training, STEM/STEAM, robotics, etc. The curriculum on informatics and digital skillsin middle and high schools should be updated to include good digital habits and digital culture. A network of electronic library systems, open educational resource platforms, and the development and implementation of an open textbook program will allow students to access online services for free. study, look up information, improve the access to knowledge of disadvantaged groups in society, save printing costs every year. The plan also aims to organize and deploy a national learning content management platform and learning management platform that will be shared by training institutions at all levels; building and standardizing digital data, helping teachers spend more time interacting with students, improving the quality of lessons.
The 2022 Decision No.2131/QĐ-BGDĐT and the 2022 Decision No.11282/ QĐ-BGDĐT aim to “strengthen the application of information technology and digital transformation in education and training for the period of 2022-2025”.
Digital competency frameworks: In February 2020, the Ministry of Information & Communications Vietnam (MIC) officially endorsed the International Computer Driving Licence (ICDL) certification through a qualification framework called Decision 111/QD-BTTTT. Under this new framework and according to the provisions of Circular 03/2014/TT-BTTTT, five ICDL modules met the basic Information Technology skills standards in Vietnam. These five modules include Computer Essentials, Online Essentials, Word Processing, Spreadsheets, and Presentation. Previously, the Ministry of Information & Communications Vietnam (MIC) issued Framework Circular No.44/2017/TT-BTTT in December 2017, providing regulations to recognise computer skills certifications issued by foreign organisations in Vietnam. The circular aimed to ensure these qualifications met the primary information technology skills standard. The new framework adopted a similar process of "syllabus review, IT system evaluation, testing and certification issue process examination", aligned with the corresponding content specified in Circular No. 03/2014/TT-BTTT. As a result, the International Computer Driving Licence (ICDL) is Vietnam's first and only international certification programme in the computer skills area.
Changes occurred due to COVID-19: No changes occurred in laws, policies, plans, or strategies due to COVID-19.
2.2.1. Technology infrastructure and digital capacity of schools
Electricity: One of the proposed outcomes of the 2017-2021 One strategic plan between the Government of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam and the United Nations in Viet Nam was to have low-carbon, climate and disaster resilient development. And to achieve the outcome, electricity generation in Viet Nam was one of the UN strategic interventions.
Computers and devices: Launched on Sept. 2021, the 2021 Internet Connection and Computers for Students Programme (Sóng và máy tính cho em) aims to provide computers to students from disadvantaged backgrounds. Furthermore, the 2021 Internet Connection and Computers for Students Programme (Sóng và máy tính cho em) also aims that no poor students will lack computers for online learning in the 2022-23 period. In response to the 2021 Internet Connection and Computers for Students Programme (Sóng và máy tính cho em), the Ba Đình District Education and Training Division worked with the district red cross society to present 235 computers to poor students in the district. Furthermore, the Nguyễn Tri Phương Junior Secondary School in Ba Đình District planned to buy 11 computers each worth VNĐ7.1 million ($312) for poor students.
The United Nations Covid-19 Socio-economic Response Plan for Viet Nam aims to mobilise partnerships with national stakeholders to provide computers, smart devices and mobile data packages to vulnerable students, including those from low-income families, children with disabilities and students in remote areas with limited internet connectivity.
Internet connectivity: The 2021 Internet Connection and Computers for Students Programme (Sóng và máy tính cho em) aims to provide internet connectivity to the whole country by the end of 2022. The 2021 Internet Connection and Computers for Students Programme (Sóng và máy tính cho em) also aimed to provide internet connection in 283 locations in September 2021 and cover 1,910 spots by the end of 2021. Furthermore, in response to the 2021 Internet Connection and Computers for Students Programme (Sóng và máy tính cho em), the Nguyễn Tri Phương Junior Secondary School in Ba Đình District aimed to provide VNĐ2 million ($88) to poor students in the district to install internet connections.
The National Strategy for Development of the Digital Economy and Society to 2025 seeks to increase the percentage of households covered with fiber optic broadband Internet to 95%. Broadband Internet service should be provided to 100% of households. All educational institutions from primary to high schools should complete the digital governance model, digital operations, standardization of digital data, and open digital data warehouse.
2.2.2. Technology and learning environments
During COVID-19, the Ministry of Education and Training, in partnerships with UNICEF, Microsoft, Viettel and other private sector actors, provided devices and software to many learners who could not access online learning to allow more students to access the internet. Furthermore, broadcasting centres supported online learning on television for students during lockdown or social distancing time due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Furthermore, with the help of the Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC), the Ministry of Education and Training supported skill development in information and communication technology (ICT) in general, especially relating to applying technology in teaching via the internet.
Providing rapid support for inclusive distance learning solutions, including support to the most vulnerable groups through leveraging traditional media to deliver learning content is one of the strategic aims of the United Nations Covid-19 Socio-economic Response Plan for Viet Nam.
According to Article 18 of the 2005 Education Law, "the State of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam shall facilitate schools and other educational institutions in organising scientific-technological research, application, and dissemination; in combining education with research and production to improve academic quality, gradually implementing the role of a cultural, scientific and technological centre for the locality or the whole country".
Article 40 of the 2005 Education Law mentions information technology as one of the critical contents of higher education.
Regarding continuing education, Article 45 of the 2005 Education Law ensures that educational programme responds to the needs of learners, updating knowledge and skills, and transferring technology. However, the 2005 Education Law does not mention what kind of learners' skills need an update.
According to the 2019 Education Law, science and technology activities in educational institutions are crucial for learners.
Furthermore, Article 74 of the 2006 Law on Information Security emphasises that the State of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam should encourage people with disabilities to participate in educational programs and training in information technology.
The 2017-2021 One strategic plan between the Government of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam and the United Nations in Viet Nam emphasises that foundational competency, including basic literacy (proficiency in mathematics, reading, writing and sciences) and cognitive and behavioural skills (e.g., critical thinking, problem-solving and communication skills) of learners are essential to achieve "green" economic growth.
The 2019 Resolution No. 52-NQ/TW on industrial revolution regulates reform on curriculum and educational programs with adaptability to changing technological environment and educating digital competence for learners at different educational levels.
According to Article 15 of the 2005 Education Law, "the State of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam is responsible for organising education and training for teachers." However, the 2005 Education Law does not mention the initial and in-service teacher training that aims to ensure the development of their digital skills or training focusing on technology as an object of study.
The 2003-2015 National Education for All (EFA) Action Plan aimed to provide postgraduate scholarships and special science and IT training to early childhood education and care, primary and lower secondary school teachers. The 2003-2015 National Education for All (EFA) Action Plan also aimed to provide 30 days in-service training to teachers.
The United Nations Covid-19 Socio-economic Response Plan for Viet Nam highlights the need to enhance knowledge and skills for teachers and school managers through virtual training opportunities on child-friendly distance learning approaches, provide incentives to teachers and education staff to reach out to students living in remote areas, develop and refine offline learning modules.
The 2019 Resolution No. 52-NQ/TW on industrial revolution promotes renovating teaching and learning method with adoption of ICT.
The 2021 Circular No.09/2021/TT-BGDĐT regulates the management and organization of online teaching and learning in secondary schools and continuing education institutions. To implement this circular, teachers need to be trained about ICT and digital competence for online teaching delivery.
2.4.1. Data privacy
Viet Nam does not have a single data protection law.
The right to privacy is currently provided for in the 2013 Constitution of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam and the 2015 Civil Code 2015 as inviolable and protected by law.
Data protection and privacy concerns are mentioned in various laws and guiding documents: the 2005 E-transactions Law, the 2006 Law on Information Security, the 2010 Law on Protection of Consumers' Rights, the 2015 Law on Cyberinformation Security, the 2018 Law on Cybersecurity.
Other legal instruments also contain provisions on data protection and privacy. These include Decree No. 85/2016/ND-CP on the security of information systems by classification; Decree No. 72/2013/ND-CP on management, provision and use of internet services and online information; Decree No. 15/2020/ND-CP on penalties for administrative violations against regulations on portal services, telecommunications, radio frequencies, information technology and electronic transactions; Circular No. 24/2015/TT-BTTTT on the management and use of Internet resources (amended by Circular No. 06/2019/TT-BTTTT); Circular No. 20/2017/TT-BTTTT on coordinating and responding to information security incidents nationwide; Decision No. 05/2017/QD-TTg of the Prime Minister on emergency response plans to ensure national cyber-information security.
However, not every law and guiding documents guarantee data privacy and protection from using technology in education. But some laws do emphasise training and education of network information security skills. For example, Article 49 of the 2015 Law on Cyberinformation Security highlights that the State should encourage organisations and individuals to invest, co-invest and join with other organisations to invest in building up university education facilities and vocational training facilities for human resource training in network information security.
Moreover, according to Article 34 of the 2018 Law on Cybersecurity, the State must formulate policies for disseminating knowledge about cybersecurity throughout the country. It encourages the state agencies to coordinate with private organisations and individuals to implement educational programs and increase cybersecurity awareness. Furthermore, Article 27 of the 2018 Law on Cybersecurity emphasises technical initiatives raising cybersecurity awareness and skills. Furthermore, the Decree 53/2022/ND-CP elaborates many clauses of the 2018 Law on Cybersecurity.
With the aim of consolidating all laws and regulations providing data protection and privacy, the Ministry of Public Securtiy (MPS), in coordination with the Ministry of Justice has formulated a comprehensive Personal Data Protection Decree in Jan. 2022. The Government of Vietnam issued Resolution No. 27/NQ-CP approving the substantive contents of the 2022 draft personal data protection decree (PDPD). The draft remains subject to consultation with the National Assembly Standing Committee (NASC) prior to issuance. Pursuant to Decision No. 06/QD-TTg of the Prime Minister, the final version of the PDPD should be presented by the Ministry of Public Security (MPS) to the Government in 2022.
2.4.2. Online abuse and cyberbullying
According to Article 73 of the 2006 Law on Information Security, protecting children from the adverse effects of the information network environment and conducting prevention measures in the application of information technology have content inciting violence and pornography are essential responsibilities of the State, society and schools. Protection against cyberbullying is indirectly provided under the 2018 Law on Cybersecurity. However, there is no mention of preventing and responding to online abuse and cyberbullying of students.
The Ministry of Education and Training had also issued a Child Safeguarding Code of Conduct of the 2017-2019 Early Childhood Care and Education Policy for every member of the Ministry of Education and Training. During their association with the Ministry of Education and Training Use computers, mobile phones, video or digital cameras or any other technology for the purpose of downloading pornography or exploiting or harassing children.
According to Article 100 of the 2005 Education Law, the Ministry of Education and Training is responsible for state management of education. However, the 2005 Education Law does not explicitly mention the role of the Ministry of Education and Training for technology in education.
According to the Government’s Decree No. 17/2017/ND-CP dated Feb 17, 2017, the Ministry of Information and Communications is the policy making and regulatory body in the fields of press; publishing; posts, telecommunications; radio frequency; information technology, electronics; broadcasting; media; foreign information; domestic information; and national information and communication infrastructure; management of related public services on behalf of the Government.
According to Article 12 of the 2015 Law on Cyberinformation Security, the Ministry of Information and Communications is responsible for network information security for the Viet Nam domain name servers. Article 50 of the 2015 Law on Cyberinformation Security mentions that it is the responsibility of the Ministry of Education and Training, in cooperation with the Ministry of Information and Communications and relevant ministries and sectors, to recognise university graduate certificates of network information security granted by foreign organisations. Furthermore, Article 52 of the 2015 Law on Cyberinformation Security recognizes the responsibility of the Ministry of Education and Training to organize training disseminating knowledge of network information security in university education establishments.
According to Article 46 of the 2006 Law on Information Security, the Ministry of Education and Training is responsible for building the program and implementing universal knowledge of information technology in the national education system. And, according to Article 57 of the 2006 Law on Information Security, the State administration of the information technology level is responsible for implementing programs and projects to bridge the gap, including installing the computer system and accessing the internet at schools and public points all over the country.
According to Article 37 of Circular No 32/2020/TT-BGDDT dated September 15, 2020 of the Ministry of Education and Training on lower secondary schools, upper secondary schools and multi-level school charters, students cannot use mobile phones and other devices in classrooms for purposes other than learning and without the teacher's permission.
This profile was reviewed by Prof. Le Anh Vinh, Dr. Luong Minh Phuong, MA. Do Duc Lan, MA. Bui Thi Dien, MA. Tran My Ngoc.