I love computing, ICT, IT whatever you want to call it. It is so much a part of my life that describing it as a separate thing seems strange to me. If I make music I make it on the computer, if I send a a letter I do it via email on the computer, if I want to communicate and idea, learn something, experience something I often do it via a computer. Technology is the means by which I can do all the various work I do and that technology at this stage is a computer in its various forms. It wasn't always so; it used to be a sheet of manuscript paper for writing music, paper, envelope and a stamp for sending a letter, the technology has simply changed, but that is not a problem. It is the way we view that technology. When and who decided that a computer was something so marvellous that it needed its own subject? This might sound strange coming from me, some one who uses computers so much in everything that I do, but that is exactly the point. We do use computers in everything we do, not all of us but certainly a lot of us. If that is the case then why is it so segregated from the rest of the curriculum?
ICT doesn't need a separate lesson, subject of part of the curriculum, does a pencil? They are the same, they are both just technology. Can you imagine A level “Pencil studies”. I'm sorry I joke, maybe it is to lighten the mood, distract from the real problem, just for a little while.
I can hear people already furiously shouting/typing/communicating all probably on a computer “but what about programming?” and I would suggest is something different altogether. Look at it like this if ICT is like learning to use a pencil, computer programming is making that pencil. Not all of us need to make pencils, not all of us need to make software, but a lot of us use them both, they are however just the technology. It might even amuse some of you to learn that I actually learnt computer programming with a paper and pencil on train, without a computer in sight.
I know not all schools and teachers use ICT so separate from everything else, but a lot of them still do, and it is those who are the problem, it is those who need to realise that it is a problem.
ICT needs to be brought back in, merged, welcomed and accepted in to the other subjects. It doesn't need to take over, it just needs a place, it needs to be a part of something again. ICT has a bad name and is at risk, of being a loner, losing the people who care about it, losing its job and losing its meaning, but it doesn't have to be that way.
Matthew C. Applegate / Pixelh8