Computer Literacy What will this mean in 2005? Helen Wolfe, Professor of CIS, Post University
What do we mean by computer literacy? If you are computer literate are you fluent? If you are fluent are you literate?
“Both information literacy and FIT are essential to use information technology effectively” Literacy and FITness are interrelated but distinct Computer Science and Telecommunication Board, 1999 National Research Council
According to the National Research Council Being Fluent with Information Technology Encompasses Intellectual Capabilities Information Technology Concepts Information Technology Skills
Information literacy focus A set of intellectual capabilities, conceptual knowledge, and contemporary skills associated with information technology Deals with content and communication: finding, organizing and analyzing information - research, assessment and evaluation Takes the form of text images, video, simulations, multimedia, interactivity Purpose: art, news, entertainment, education, research, business, commerce, politics
The National Academy of Engineering Technically Speaking, 2002 The technology literate citizen Has knowledge –everyday pervasiveness, use, tradeoffs between costs and benefits Understands benefits and risks, seeks information about new technologies, participates in (ways of thinking and acting) Can apply capabilities
Intellectual Capabilities Able to apply productively to work and everyday lives in complex situations understanding consequences Understands when IT assists or impedes Adapts to changes and advancements Involves communications, information processing, and problem solving
Referencing the Computer Science and Telecommunications Board One who is fluent with technology (FIT) –Engages in sustained reasoning – defines, clarifies, revises, tests etc. using programs, design tools, visualization and modeling environments, web resources –Manages complexity involving a number of tasks as problem clarification, solution formulation, design, implementation,, testing, evaluating the outcome Plans, designs, integrates, responds to the unexpected, diagnoses (debugs) Manages resources – memory, storage, bandwidth, time effective benchmarks Understands the linkages and interdependencies – word size, modem speed, dedicated lines, cable or DSL connections
Intellectual capabilities for FIT continued Testing a solution Understands design meets user needs. Tests a solution Comprehends the connections between iterative design, testing, implementation Organizes and navigates information structures and evaluates information
FITness Manage faulty solutions Ability to find and evaluate information –Reading a manual –Using online help –Applying Boolean logic –Evaluating sources and information- valid, relevant, timely, complete, accurate. appropriate
Collaborate – work in groups to complete a complex project Communicate at appropriate levels –Convey proper information to right audiences – experts, novices, providing documentation
FITness Expect the unexpected – understanding the whole picture, additional needs, changes, add- ons, budgetary changes Anticipate changing technologies Think about IT abstractly – related to culture, policies, embedded procedures, hierarchy, power structure Becoming independent lifelong learners so can adapt to new technologies Becoming adept at applying technology to personally relevant tasks
Conceptual Foundations of IT Contributing to FIT The programming sequence – programming fundamentals/structures, algorithmic thinking Basics of Information systems – hardware, software, people, processes, networks, data/information, interfaces, storage, security, privacy Digital representation Information organization – forms, structure –Databases, Boolean logic and search engines
FIT Technology Skills Connecting the parts of a PC and its major peripherals – learning about cables, ports Using basic operating system features Using a word processor to create a text document Using software for graphics, art work, illustrations – presentation software Connecting to a network Using the Internet to find information – browsers, search engines, how to query and evaluate results
FIT technology skills continued Using a computer to communicate with others Using a spreadsheet to model Using a database system to set up and access useful information Using instructional materials - manuals and online help for features and new applications.
Is the distinction between fluency and literacy real or a problem for virtual reality? What else? Privacy and Data Mining? Photographic truth? Issues for informed citizens? As educators what is our mission?
Upon successful completion of a course in computer literacy What should a student be able to do?
Competencies to be Learned? Upon successful completion, the student will be able to –Define “computer” and its role in converting data into information –Describe computer categories and their roles –Identify input, processing, storage, output hardware and peripherals –Explain the difference between system and application software - Identify interface elements prompts, menus, graphical objects, commands - Use documentation resources: manuals, tutorials, and online help - Understand the computer market by analyzing computer advertisements for price, technical specifications, and performance
More competencies Define computer compatibility Select the best application software for a task Understand physical and logical storage Format a disk – Why? Create valid file and folder names Understand architecture – ROM, RAM, virtual memory, cache, CMOS, factors effecting CPU performance, expansion boards, busses transporting bits and bytes. Word size Apply telecommunication technology for research and communicating – email, FTP, Telnet, search engines, Boolean Logic
Activities Supporting Outcomes Tutorials Cases Projects Write an essay using Boolean logic to find sources online and format, edit, insert a picture Design a computer configuration using online sites such as Dell or Gateway and create a spreadsheet to compare bundled systems
Activities Create a spreadsheet for data presentation, decision support, and graphing – e.g. a budget Create a Power Point presentation Create an effective web page for web publication Create a chart using Paint Identify issues relating to computer crime, security, and privacy and present findings in a table Discuss ethical computer use
More Activities Create a slide show about a hobby or special interest Design a sign for a local event using the Paint accessory Any more suggestions? Let’s divide into groups and discuss revising outcomes and suggest additional activities to support accomplishing these.