Monday, 8 April 2013

Renaming the subject

Some time ago, I mentioned a report [PDF] from the Royal Society of Engineering, entitled Shut Down or Restart?, about computing in schools, which made a number of recommendations about the subject.

It's first recommendation related to terminology. The report criticised the vague and inconsistent use of terms such as "ICT" and "digital skills" and recommended that the subject was divided into three areas:

1. Computer Science
2. Digital Literacy
3. Information Technology.

Computer science covers the more rigorous, academic and theoretical part of the subject, including topics such as software development and computer architecture.

Digital literacy covers the basic computing skills required to use computers and function in the modern world, and includes such things as office skills, using the Internet, and digital photography.

Information technology is the more practical, application focussed, informatics, social side of the subject, including topics such as project planning, designing information systems, information skills, and the social implications of the subject.

I said at the time of the publication of the report that I planned to adopt this terminology in my own portfolio, and this process began a few weeks ago when I met with people from the Assessment Standards team to look at renaming the External Verification groups in my area. This process has now commenced.

But the terminology will affect more than Verification Groups since I plan to use it for all future developments.

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