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Report on ITTE conference in July

Dr Christina Preston

Report on ITTE conference in July

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Digital Futures: Shaping tomorrow’s learning and teaching

ITTE and sister organisations, MirandaNet and MESH, held a conference in July in which they focused on new Computing Curriculum that has been in schools in England since September 2014. At the same time curriculum reviews are progressing in other regions of the UK and internationally. It is an exciting but challenging time for education and the place of computing technology within it. The questions that were asked by the ITTE community were:

  • How should initial teacher education respond to these developments and how could continuing professional development evolve to maximise the potential of technology for professional learning?
  • Can Computer Science, IT and Digital Literacy be harmonised into a coherent and responsible curriculum for schools and students generating not only specialist subject knowledge but enriching the entire curriculum from PE, through Drama, and all the way to PSE?

The general conference themes were:

•   Redefining the computing curriculum

What is the common knowledge base that underpins Computer Science, ICT and Digital Literacy? How can an inclusive school curriculum be constructed around them? How can technology enhance learning and teaching in the school and classroom?

•   Reorienting initial teacher education and training

How may new computing teachers be prepared to teach in the context of new curricula? Will they be extended professionals or narrow specialists? What skill, theoretical frameworks, practitioner models and school experience will build strong foundations for their future careers?

   Reinvigorating professional development

Can practising teachers and allied professionals avoid the pitfalls of the old ICT curriculum? Can professional renewal and retraining be supported in a fast changing domain like Computing? Are MOOCs for CPD a solution? What does a professional culture of computational thinking really look like?

There is a report by Terry Freedman here