From this September, ICT will no longer be taught in schools, having been replaced by Computer Science.
A decision that was officially announced almost two years ago, it’s been met with discussions from both sides of the fence. Some are stipulating that the change is long overdue and many others are explaining it’s a move in the wrong direction and whilst we understand the latter group’s point of view, we feel overall, it’s a positive step forward.
With numerous reasons why we believe this, the following three are arguably the most notable.
1. It will bring IT lessons into the 21st century
Learning about word processing, spreadsheet usage and database design is obviously beneficial, but the reality is it’s all a little old fashioned.
Students today have grown up using computers before they even started school and will have played around with the likes of Microsoft Word for years. OK, they may not know the ins and outs of it, but they’ll know some of the basic formatting abilities and at the end of the day, is there a need for the majority to know a great deal more?
What students today could do with knowing more about is programming; they could do with finding out how software works and its intricacies – which is exactly what should happen with the delivery of computer science lessons.
2. It will better prepare students for a career in the technology industry
At present, the lessons are focused on delivering a basic amount of knowledge on various computer-related topics, both practical and theoretical.
Whilst this is good to a certain extent, the topics often aren’t of any real use to the students when we’re looking at their future career – or even their lives in general.
With the new curriculum, the idea is to teach more topics that will help students secure technology-based careers – such as being a programmer – and therefore they should be more effective than the lessons having been delivered over the last few years.
3. It will appeal more to students
One of the most difficult things teachers have to do is keep students engaged. With the way ICT lessons are delivered at the moment, this is a difficult feat to achieve, as apart from anything, a lot of the content is somewhat basic and many students know a lot already.
With computer science, as we said above, it’s focused more on aspects that are going to be of use once the students leave school and as such, those with existing knowledge of the topics will be fewer.
Whilst we’re certain some individuals will know a certain amount of programming, for example, the amount of people who do will undoubtedly be less, making the lessons much more appealing, either because they’re more suited to students’ needs or they’re fresh and interesting.
As with any change, there’s always opposition, but we genuinely feel that by changing ICT lessons to computer science lessons, it will result in a considerably more beneficial computer education.