IT for Teaching

The tasks that teachers accomplish using IT systems can be differentiated into two categories. First, are the highly predictable tasks that resemble those performed by business users. IT professionals can plan and test functionality. These tasks include many of the data management tasks such as recording attendance and grades for which teachers are responsible. It also includes those instructional tools in which the goals and the practices are like workforce training. Designing systems to meet these needs are familiar to many IT professionals as these needs are similar to those in many other organizations. 

Second, there are the teaching tasks that are associated with what are commonly called authentic learning environments. These can be unpredictable as they are driven by students’ interests and rely on diverse sources of information, and the products of students’ learning emerge as the projects progress. When teaching with these methods, teachers question their practices, explore new options, and experiment with new tools and technologies. These individuals will seek to use the IT systems for purposes never conceived when the system requirements were first defined. Obviously, this introduces even more variables and greater uncertainty into the design and configuration of IT systems.