Teaching Consumer Competences – A Strategy for Consumer Education

Proposals of objectives and content of consumer education

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The Nordic consumer organisations - government agencies and authorities - have collaborated on educational issues since the 1960s. Over the last ten years, collaboration in the sector of consumer education has been extended to the Baltic States. For all these countries, the TemaNord objectives for consumer education proposed by the Nordic Council of Ministers have proven to be a useful instrument for curriculum development and explaining and organising consumer-related education topics in connection with teacher training, municipalities and schools. This report on consumer education is the third, revised edition based on editions published in 1995 and 2000. The objectives and content of consumer education programmes promoting sustainable consumption need to be revised and expanded as the digitalisation of technology and the increasing diversity of media change the operating environment of consumers, making necessary the introduction of new objectives and fields of consumer education. This strategy is designed to enhance consumer education and the teaching of consumer competences and to help curriculum planners, educators, teachers and trainers.



Why Consumer Education?

The past decades have seen significant changes in markets and services. These changes increase the need for consumer education and make necessary a revision of its themes and focal areas. Money no longer has to take the form of actual coins and notes, but can be spent from virtual wallets. The number of products and public and commercial services on offer has multiplied enormously, while increased globalisation has made it even more difficult to obtain a general overview of the economy. Marketing has changed and is increasingly associated with entertainment and social interaction, generating an ever-growing flow of information and advertising.


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