Teaching About Technology

Teaching about technology was common when computers first arrived in educational markets. Called computer literacy at the time, it focused on teaching students the names and functions of systems rather than how to use them. This was a very reasonable approach at the time as few individuals had computers in their homes and one of the most important aspects of IT was knowing the system one needed and setting it up to function. Whereas computer users today can purchase systems that automate much of the configuration (for example, when I replaced my years-old printer recently, both my Macintosh computer and my Windows PC recognized the new peripheral and installed the drivers without me taking any action), previous generations needed to understand how their peripherals connected and install and configure the software to make them operational. 

Although teaching computer literacy as described above is not common any longer, many schools continue to teach lessons in which the systems are the curriculum. For example, when teaching lessons about digital citizenship, cybersecurity, and coding, educators are teaching about technology.  

Training users operate the systems they need to use is also teaching about technology. Ensuring students know how to use Google Workspaces applications, the full text databases available through the school library, and the tools used by math teachers for graphing are examples of technology training within the domain of educators. Ensuring teachers know how to use the SIS is an example of training with tin the domain of school IT professionals.