How to determine if your students are ICT capable?

Teaching Strategies

In a recent study conducted in the UK(Crawford, 2011), five attributes indicated that students were ICT capable. Students who had high levels of ICT capability were able to:

  1. Use ICT to support their learning in all subjects;
  2. Use common ICT tools;
  3. Take responsibility for their own learning, developing strategies to help them learn how to use unfamiliar ICT tools, and work collaboratively;
  4. Use current ICT hardware and software and understand its practical limitations;
  5. Understand that using ICT affects social processes.

What then is an ICT capable student?

An ICT capable student is someone who has the disposition to construct ICT solutions to problems that are relevant to the context and are based on the opportunities and limitations of the sytems available.

It is important to remember that it is not sufficient to have a good knowledge and understanding of ICT skills. A student must be able to decide to use whether to use the ICT tool in order to construct a solution to a problem. The choice of an effective strategic is dependent both on the knowledge that has been acquired and the awareness of this knowledge in addition to the realisation that its use would be appropriate. As Kennewell et al. (2000) states "ICT capability therefore involves an interaction between technical facts and processes, strategic knowledge, meta-cognitive self-knowledge and affective aspects of mind including self-confidence and a disposition to use technology."

Students need to develop an awareness of the power and limitations of the systems available together with a prediction to seek ICT solutions to situations.

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