What is ICT ? - # 1 - Where did the term come from?
The term ICT might be still strange to some, confusing to others and yet misunderstood by an even
larger number of well-intentioned colleagues. For many there may appear to be no difference between 'IT' and 'ICT'
- and in fact for those who have a good understanding of what teachers of IT
were actually teaching some 20 years ago there is no difference
- as the definitions on the next page may prove!
David Blunkett et al decided to spend UK money funding some expensive research into the use of IT in American schools and then, although not one of the suggestions included in the glossy Report, suddenly the term ICT was being bandied about with no apparent reference to those at the chalk face.
As any teacher of I(C)T knows, the difference between Information and Data is that Information is only effective if it actually communicates. Thus the conjunction of 'Information' and 'Communication' is nothing less, in the writer's view, than unfortunate tautology.
However, for me, ICT is the most astounding breakthrough in educational technology since the invention of the blackboard. Since the introduction of ICT we have seen many recent developments both in 'mobile computing' in all its forms and the increasing developments in Open Source Software. However, how we define ICT is the key to how we use it and thus how it can pervade all aspects of Teaching, Learning and Administration - as we may see from the next page: