Schoolzone blog: IT or ICT

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20 Jan 2015

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Warning: some readers may find the first part of this post very dull! But read on...

In preparing our latest white paper, Digital (r)evolution in schools, our crack team of researchers started an argument which lies at the centre of the (r)evolution - so called because it's a relatively slow revolution - should we refer to IT or ICT?

Personally, I've never understood why schools had a different name for IT, compared to the rest of the world. The additional C stands for communication, but why schools have this as a separate entity, swelling the abbreviation by a massive 50%, has always eluded me: communication is just as much part of IT for the rest of the world as it is for schools, but they don't feel the need to include it.

ICT was originally (I seem to remember) the label for the aspect of the national curriculum which covered this area, but it seems to have become the norm to refer to all IT as ICT, whether it overtly involves communication or not. So, in our report, we've taken a stand against the superfluous C. No more shall we labour with ridiculous consonant; from now on schools can accept their place alongside the rest of the world as fuly fledged users of IT and not labour under the impression that they are somehow backward in technology. Let's show the rest of the world that we know what they're talking about when they use 'IT', by doing the same ourselves. On to the future, schools!

Meanwhile, back on Earth, our new paper, Digital (r)evolution in schools, makes for very interesting reading. We look at trends in school funding and IT spending - for example, we note that primary spending is increasing (compared to budgets) whereas secondary spending is in decline. We also look at some of the bigger picture issues facing suppliers - how school purchasing is shifting, who makes the decisions and how much schools have to spend.

If you're off to BETT this week, read this first and you'll be well prepared. And while you're there, you can apply your mind to the important question of whether we should refer to IT or ICT.




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