Functional Skills

Managing and operating ICT

This element involves students applying technical knowledge and skills to select, use and troubleshoot appropriate digital technologies when investigating, creating and communicating. Students develop an understanding of hardware and software components, and operations of appropriate ICT systems, including their functions, processes, procedures and devices. They apply technical knowledge and skills to efficiently and securely manage and maintain digital data. In developing and acting with information and communication technology capability, students:

  • select and use hardware and software
  • understand ICT systems
  • manage digital data.

[From The Australian Curriculum]

Functional Skills

Should functional skills be the realm of ICT lessons specifically or should they be taught across the curriculum?

There are good arguments that functional skills need to be included in both ICT lessons and in other subjects. Just as students practice writing both in specific English lessons as well as in all school subjects, so should they be practicing the skills needed to use digital technologies in all subjects, including ICT.

Recent curriculum reforms place increased significance on the skills associated with digital literacy and clearly identify ICT as a core element of the curricula, the skills of which should also be developed throughout subject teaching.

[Hague and Payton (2010) Digital Literacy Across the Curriculum, Future Lab, p.24]