MAX ICT Course

MAX ICT [Information and Communication Technology] Course

Sources for MAX ICT course

  • Cambridge IGCSE ICT 0417 Past Year Exam Papers 2010-17
  • Cambridge IGCSE ICT 0417 Syllabus 2019
  • CIE website:
  • Images: Free Images from Google search engine.


All candidates study the following topics.

Theoretical Section Component
Paper 01
MAXICT01 – Types and Components of Computer Systems 041701
MAXICT02 – Input and Output Devices 041701
MAXICT03 – Storage Devices and Media 041701
MAXICT04 – Networks and the effects of using them 041701
MAXICT05 – The effects of using IT 041701
MAXICT06 – ICT Applications 041701
MAXICT07 – The Systems Life Cycle 041701
MAXICT08 – Safety and Security 041701
MAXICT09 – Audience 041701

Practical Section Components
Paper 02 & 03
MAXICT10 – Communication 041702-03
MAXICT11 – File Management 041702-03
MAXICT12 – Images 041702-03
MAXICT13 – Layout 041702-03
MAXICT14 – Styles 041702-03
MAXICT15 – Proofing 041702-03
MAXICT16 – Graphs and Charts 041702-03

Paper 02
MAXICT17 – Document Production 041702
MAXICT18 – Data Manipulation 041702
MAXICT19 – Presentations 041702

Paper 03
MAXICT20 – Data Analysis 041703
MAXICT21 – Website Authoring 041703

MAXICT022 – ICT Summary 0417-01-02-03

Advanced Section(s)
MAXICT23 – History of Computing Course
MAXICT24 – Dynamic Presentation Skills Course

Interactive Club

ICT Teaching, learning and examination resources
MAX ICT Important Exam Topics 01-02-03

We teach, model, and encourage a love of learning, collaboration, and compassion for others.

Join our ICT course today for a complete interactive teaching and learning experience!

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Our ICT Section contains wealth of resources to prepare learners for Cambridge IGCSE ICT 0417.

These include:

  • Complete set of notes for theoretical Paper 1
  • Exemplar exam questions for Paper 1, 2 & 3
  • Exercises and activities for conducting regular ICT lessons
  • Homework assignments
  • Online assessments and quizzes
  • Past year exam papers with solutions
  • Our personalized tutorials for revising all important skills for Practical Paper 2 and 3
  • videos and multimedia for interactive learning
  • Summary of all important topics for Paper 1, 2 & 3
  • Teaching resources: Exam papers for the entire academic year, long-term plans, medium-term plans and short-term plans
  • Procedures for conducting ICT practical tests
  • Comments bank
  • Resources for conducting ICT CCA / ECA
  • All resources are compatible with MAC, windows and Google Apps
  • Suitable for students and teachers of International Schools offering IGCSE ICT 0417 as a subject.


  • Compatible with International Curriculum such as the University of Cambridge Assessment International Examinations IGCSE, A & O Levels syllabus.
  • It is equally compatible with MAX Certification and Bachelor programs.

Join our Collaborative ICT Lessons on BlendSpace (TES Connect)

[1] The Importance of ICT as a subject

Some portions of text taken from Cambridge IGCSE IGCSE ICT 0417 Syllabus 2019 (

What is the Cambridge IGCSE ICT Course?

ICT stands for Information and Communication Technology. ICT refers to technologies that provide access to information through telecommunications. It is similar to Information Technology (IT), but focuses primarily on communication technologies. A good way to think about ICT is to consider all uses of digital technology that exist to help individuals, businesses and organisations use information and communicate with each other using technology. This includes the Internet, wireless networks, cell phones, and other communication mediums.

In the past few decades, information and communication technologies have provided society with a vast array of new communication capabilities. For example, people can communicate in real-time with others in different countries using technologies such as instant messaging, voice over IP (VoIP), and video-conferencing. Social networking websites like Facebook allow users from all over the world to remain in contact and communicate on a regular basis.

Modern information and communication technologies have created a “global village,” in which people can communicate with others across the world as if they were living next door. For this reason, ICT is often studied in the context of how modern communication technologies affect society.

Progression of ICT Skills in the Secondary School

Students in the Lower Secondary School follow Cambridge ICT Starters curriculum which leads to a progression in Cambridge IGCSE ICT 0417.

Students in Secondary School learn lifelong skills which are prerequisites for their academic or professional careers. There is a very high demand for skilled ICT professionals in private and public sectors. Furthermore, ICT skills are required in each and every profession; from doctors to accountants. The IGCSE ICT syllabus prepares students in a wide variety of topics. These include, spreadsheets for data analysis, database manipulation, data-logging, Internet technologies, graphics and desktop publishers, creating multimedia content such as videos and presentations, creating professional documents using word processors, and developing a basic understanding of programming language such as HTML and cascading stylesheets for website design and development.

[2] Skills

[2.1] Lifelong Skills

Information and Communication Technology encourages learners to develop lifelong skills, including:

  • understanding and using applications
  • using Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to solve problems
  • analysing, designing, implementing, testing and evaluating ICT systems, ensuring that they are fit for purpose
  • understanding the implications of technology in society, including social, economic and ethical uses
  • awareness of the ways ICT can help in home, learning and work environments.

[2.2] Practical Skills in ICT

  • use e-mail and the Internet to gather and communicate information;
  • use word processing facilities to prepare documents;
  • use database facilities to manipulate data to solve problems and represent data graphically;
  • integrate data from different sources into a single document or report;
  • produce output in a specified format;
  • use a spreadsheet to create and test a data model, extracting and summarising data;
  • represent data as information in a variety of chart formats;
  • create a structured website with style sheets, tables and hyperlinks;
  • create and control an interactive presentation.

[2.3] Knowledge and Understanding

  • the functions of the main hardware and software components of computer systems;
  • the networking of information-processing systems;
  • the ways in which information and communication technology is used and the effects of its use;
  • the stages and methods of system analysis and design;
  • computing terminology.

[3] Progression to Academic or Professional careers

Uses of ICT in education are widespread and are continually growing worldwide. ICT makes significant contributions to teaching and learning in school and is a cross-curricular subject. Progression from School to College for ICT students promises an excellent academic and professional career. College graduates with ICT skills are in demand by employers in many sectors. It is widely acknowledged that there are skill shortages in the ICT area by employers, industry experts and Government officials alike.

Students are able to develop more advanced ICT skills and knowledge in the Secondary School. They deepen their knowledge of technology and how it works. They learn practical skills like coding/programming and gain a theoretical understanding of topics like the impact of ICT in everyday life at home and work.

Cambridge syllabuses are general qualifications that enable candidates either to progress directly to employment, or to proceed to further qualifications

Candidates who are awarded grades C to A* in IGCSE ICT Course are well prepared to follow courses leading to Cambridge International AS and A Level Applied Information and Communication Technology, or the equivalent.

[3.1] Some Common FAQs about ICT

How many period are required per week for teaching ICT?
Teachers need a minimum of 4 periods a week, 40 minutes each for completing the ICT syllabus in 6 semesters (2 years)

Why is it a good idea to study ICT?
ICT prepares students for proactive and practical skills for today’s modem world. It gives them an insight of the future technologies. ICT skills are pre-requisites for everyday life, besides targeting highly skilled jobs or alternatively a dynamic business career.

What will I learn in ICT?
ICT comprises of theoretical and practical sections, with more emphasis on Communication i.e. electronic communication and technologies. Students have an opportunity to learn key skills in using multimedia software and hardware, presentation authoring, web authoring, data analysis and documentation production. In today’s modern world these are vital skills for employment or an advanced academic career in IT.

What career paths can I follow after studying ICT?
ICT is a key subject for learning intermediary skills in latest Computer technologies. Having an ability in ICT ensures success in careers such as IT Specialists in any major industry. It gives a wide range of jobs since it is a pre-requisite for almost every job. It is highly essential for those seeking career as software engineers / specialists since it gives them a basic guideline of using latest software. ICT also equips students with careers such as data analysts, website designers and developers, e-commerce specialists and networking engineers.

Students can go into computer programming which is fairly technical and may require them to be proficient in mathematics. This is a pathway which could lead them to a top University for Computer Science.
Alternatively students could look at something like network support / installation which is a more practical option.

What skills will I develop while studying ICT?
ICT equips students with informative and communication skills using latest technologies. Students have an opportunity to learn communication skills in presentation authoring, web technologies such as website development, internet and e-commerce, social networking, computer networks and technologies, system analysis and design, data analysis, besides using a word processing software, spreadsheets and database software.

How does ICT link to the real world?
ICT is a great subject where students get to grip with new technologies and apply then to real life contexts. Students get an opportunity to interact with latest e-devices, communication devices such as mobile phones, wireless networks and other communication mediums. Students learn about social networking which is another growing field in ICT. ICT is applicable in everyday life since computer technologies are all around us from buying online, travelling, schools, offices, shops etc. ICT also gives students an awareness of the impact of new technologies on methods of working in the outside world and on social, economic, ethical and moral issues.

What subjects would complement ICT?
ICT is a co-curricular subject. This means that the three core subjects (English, Mathematics and Science) and all other subjects have portions of curriculum which require students to use ICT facilities. The most common examples are in Business studies, Humanities and other elective subjects.

[4] Aims of this course

This course has been designed to provide the knowledge, understanding and practical skills that you need for the Cambridge IGCSE in Information and Technology (ICT) or equivalent Curriculum.

This course provides:

  • Practice Examination Questions for the Theoretical and practical elements of the course
  • Activities which allow students practice in answering questions for the theoretical parts of the course
  • Source data files for the tasks and activities
  • Hints and tips for Theoretical Paper 1, Practical Paper 2 & 3
  • Suggestions for Possible Teaching Methods and Activities.

Although it has been designed with the CAIE syllabus in mind, it can also be used as a useful reference text for other Practical ICT Qualifications as GCSE and other equivalent Level 2 courses.

[5] Grading and reporting

Cambridge IGCSE results are shown by one of the grades A*, A, B, C, D, E, F or G indicating the standard achieved, A* being the highest and G the lowest. ‘Ungraded’ indicates that the candidate’s performance fell short of the standard required for grade G. ‘Ungraded’ will be reported on the statement of results but not on the certificate. The letters Q (result pending), X (no results) and Y (to be issued) may also appear on the statement of results but not on the certificate.

No marks will be awarded for using brand names of software packages or hardware e.g. where a question requires a type of software to be named candidates must use the generic term such as word-processing software, desk top publishing software, database software etc. Students must not use terms such as Microsoft Word, Publisher, Works etc.

As ICT is a subject that is constantly developing, marks will be awarded for relevant answers which relate to new or emerging technology that has not been specified in the syllabus.

[5.1] Cambridge Percentage Uniform Grade Boundaries

The table below shows the percentage uniform mark range for each grade.

Grade Percentage Uniform Mark Range
     A* 90-100
     A 80-89
     B 70-79
     C 60-69
     D 50-59
     E 40-49
     F (Cambridge IGCSE only) 30-39
     G (Cambridge IGCSE only) 20-29

For Cambridge IGCSE Information and Communication Technology, candidates take three components: Paper 1 Theory; Paper 2 Document Production, Data Manipulation and Presentations and Paper 3 Data Analysis and Website Authoring.

Components Weighting
Paper 1    40%
2 hours
Paper 1 Theory. This written paper tests sections 1–21 of the syllabus content. All questions are compulsory, mostly multiple choice or short answer questions, but also some require longer answers.100 marks.External assessment.
Paper 2    30%
2 hours 30 minutes
Paper 2. Document Production, Data Manipulation and Presentations 2 hours 30 minutes This test assesses the practical skills needed to use the applications covered in sections 17, 18 and 19 of the syllabus content. All tasks are compulsory.80 marks. External assessment
Paper 3    30%
2 hours 30 minutes
Paper 3. Data Analysis and Website Authoring 2 hours 30 minutesThis test assesses the practical skills needed to use the applications covered in sections 20 and 21 of the syllabus content.All tasks are compulsory.80 marks. External assessment

This syllabus is examined in the June and November examination series. This syllabus is available to private candidates.

[6] Syllabus Aims and Assessment Objectives

Syllabus Aims

Cambridge IGCSE Information and Communication Technology aims to develop:

  • knowledge of ICT including new and emerging technologies
  • autonomous and discerning use of ICT
  • skills to enhance work produced in a range of contexts
  • skills to analyse, design, implement, test and evaluate ICT systems
  • skills to consider the impact of current and new technologies on methods of working in the outside world and on social, economic, ethical and moral issues
  • ICT-based solutions to solve problems
  • the ability to recognise potential risks when using ICT, and use safe, secure and responsible practice.
  • help students to develop and consolidate their knowledge, skills and understanding in Information and Communication Technology;
  • encourage students to develop further as autonomous users of Information and Communication Technology;
  • encourage students to continue to develop their Information and Communication Technology skills in order to enhance their work in a variety of subject areas;
  • provide opportunities for students to analyse, design, implement, test and evaluate Information and Communication Technology systems;
  • encourage students to consider the impact of new technologies on methods of working in the outside world and on social, economic, ethical and moral issues;
  • help students to grow in their awareness of the ways in which Information and Communication
  • Technology is used in practical and work-related situations.

Assessment Objectives

AO1 Recall, select and communicate knowledge and understanding of ICT.

AO2 Apply knowledge, understanding and skills to produce ICT-based solutions.

AO3 Analyze, evaluate, make reasoned judgments and present conclusions.

Command terms

Command term Assessment
Objective [AO]
Analyse Break down in order to bring out the essential elements or structure.
Calculate Obtain a numerical answer showing the relevant stages in the working.
Compare Give an account of the similarities between two (or more) items or scenarios, referring to both (all) of them throughout.
Construct Display information in a diagrammatic or logical form.
Contrast Give an account of the differences between two (or more) items or situations, referring to both (all) of them throughout.
Define Give the precise meaning of a word, phrase, concept or physical quantity.
Describe Give a detailed account.
Discuss Offer a considered and balanced review that includes a range of arguments, factors or hypotheses. Opinions or conclusions should be presented clearly and supported by appropriate evidence.
Distinguish Make clear the differences between two or more concepts or items.
Evaluate Make an appraisal by weighing up the strengths and limitations.
Explain Give a detailed account including reasons or causes.
Formulate Express precisely and systematically the relevant concept(s) or argument(s)
Identify Provide an answer from a number of possibilities.
Justify Give valid reasons or evidence to support an answer or conclusion.
Outline Give a brief account or summary.
State Give a specific name, value or other brief answer without explanation or calculation.
To what extent Consider the merits or otherwise of an argument or concept. Opinions and conclusions should be presented clearly and supported with appropriate evidence and sound argument.

[7] ICT Grade Descriptors / Rubrics / Assessment Criteria / Levels

Grade ICT Key Stage 4 / Grade 9-10 / Year 10-11

Grade Descriptors / Rubrics / Assessment Criteria / Levels


Marks /



Percentage uniform marks

A* N/A 90-100
A /


  • Candidates recall, select and communicate a thorough knowledge and understanding of ICT across a
    broad range of ICT including the impact of its social and commercial use and its use in the wider world.
  • They apply knowledge, understanding and skills to a variety of situations, selecting and using a range of ICT tools efficiently to critically analyse problems and produce effective ICT-based solutions to solve them. In their solutions, they manipulate and process data efficiently and effectively, and represent their results in the most appropriate format. They effectively model situations, sequence instructions, interpret and systematically analyse information and amend their solutions to suit a given audience or when requirements change. They work systematically and understand and adopt safe, secure and
    responsible practices.
  • They critically analyse and evaluate the way they and others use ICT. They use ICT to communicate effectively, demonstrating a clear sense of purpose and audience.




C /


  • Candidates recall, select and communicate a good knowledge and understanding of ICT, including the
    impact of its social and commercial use and its use in the wider world.
  • They apply knowledge, understanding and skills in a range of situations, applying ICT tools effectively to analyse problems and provide ICT-based solutions to solve them. In their solutions, they input and select information, process data and represent their results in an appropriate format. They model situations, sequence instructions and explore ideas. They amend their solutions to suit a given audience. They work
    using safe, secure and responsible practices.
  • They review and evaluate the way they and others use ICT. They use ICT to communicate, demonstrating consideration of purpose and audience.




E /


  • Candidates recall, select and communicate a basic knowledge and understanding of aspects of ICT, including its use in the wider world.
  • They apply limited knowledge, understanding and skills to address simple problems and create basic solutions using ICT tools. In their solutions, they input, select and present data and information, and use simple models and instructions to process data. They respond to needs using ICT. They sometimes
    review and provide comments on the way they and others use ICT. They demonstrate some awareness of the need for safe, secure and responsible practices.
  • They use ICT to communicate, demonstrating limited awareness of purpose and audience.
< 29




G N/A 20-29

[8] Advice on Answering ICT Exam Questions

Before your talking ICT examination, you should practice with question from book and past papers. This section gives you some general advice and hints on answering question.

Do’s and Don’ts

Do: Don’t:
  • Make sure you have answered all the question; check every page including the back page.
  •  Read the question carefully and give an answer to what is being asked, not something else
  •  Ask for scrap paper and use it to note key point you plan to cover.
  • Repeat the question as part of your answer.
  •  Leave out any question.
  •  Write more than the space or lines provided for the answer.
  • Waffle.

A question may ask for a specific number of pint or reason; you should only give the number of answer asked for. If you do not know the answers to a question then make a sensible guess. You cannot lose marks for incorrect answers. If the question asks you to choose two items in a list and you do not know the answer, choose the two that seem most likely –do not choose more than the question asks .if you are asked for an advantage and a disadvantage, do not make one the opposite of the other-choose different points.

[9] Command words used in ICT exam questions

Different key words are used in examination question and they each require different types of answer. Key words include:

STATE / LIST / NAME: These are usually short statements that answer the question. This is the only occasion where a one-word answer may obtain a mark.

GIVE: You must provide a little more information in your answer than a single word.

DESCRIBE: You must be able to describe the answer to the question in clear sentences. The length of the description will depend on the space provided for the answer and the number of marks given for the question.

EXPLAIN: This is similar to ‘describe ‘but you should also think about the advantages and the disadvantages of the situation and include these if appropriate. Make sure that, for each point you write about, it is disadvantage. Sometimes you will only be asked to explain one side, e.g. ‘explain the benefits of’ or ‘explain the problem with’. When you are asked to explain something don’t answer with phrases like ‘it’s quicker’ or ‘it’s easier’ or ‘it’s cheaper’ etc. without explaining why.

DISCUSS: When you are asked to discuss a situation, start with an explanation, including (if appropriate) the advantage and disadvantages. You may be asked to finish with a conclusion giving your view, either for or against, but make sure you have a reasoned argument.


This is important; if your answer are rushed and you find yourself finishing the paper half an hour early then you may have lost important mark where detail is missing and from the mark awarded  for spelling, punctuation and grammar. The following example shows how some understanding of timing can help.

A recent CIE IGCSE ICT theory paper had to be completed in a total of 2 hour (ie 120 minutes) allowing for ten minutes to read the paper, this work out at just under a minute per mark. A question worth five marks should take a little under five minutes to answer.

[10] ICT Practical Paper 2 & 3 FAQ’s 

In questions where students are asked to circle two or three answers will they be penalised for circling more than the number asked for?

Yes, for every ‘extra’ answer the student provides they will lose a mark but they will never be awarded a negative mark for a question.

Does this apply to questions where students have to tick a number of boxes?


My students sometimes get confused with the way questions are phrased. What are the differences between name, give, describe, reasons, discuss etc.? What do they mean?

Give and name generally mean to use a phrase or sometimes even a single word, though students are advised to use a phrase wherever possible.

Describe generally requires sentences to be used and in addition to naming the answer students should go on to write a sentence or two to show their understanding of the answer. Give reasons, in general, means to compare with alternatives. Discuss requires students to give both sides of an argument and then to provide their conclusion.

I don’t have a font called serif on my machine.

It is unlikely that you will have a font called serif in your font list. A serif is the short mark at the ends of a letter in fonts like “Times New Roman” or “Courier”, whereas sans-serif fonts are those without the serifs like “Arial”. Students must learn to apply those fonts containing serifs or without (sans) serifs from the font lists on their machines.

In presentation authoring what is the difference between transitions and animations?

Transitions are the effects used between slides, animations are the effects within a slide (these are called builds in some software).When we import a CSV file in MS-Access, in the import wizard; there are two possible options: to add a primary key using Access and to choose no primary key.

Candidates may or may not apply an ID field when importing the CSV file and will not be penalized when the printing specification is for all fields, but the ID field should not appear in selections where only specified fields are requested.

When creating a new table from an existing file, two of the options given in Access are “import “the file or “link” the file. Is there a reason to choose one of these options over the other?

The papers specify import the file, and this indicates the option to take. When working on a single machine, the effects of linking versus importing may not be obvious, but when files are uploaded electronically a linked file will not be uploaded within the database and, hence, reports will not work as they cannot link to the source file data.

Should our candidates align header and footer elements roughly by eye, for example to centre text on a page that is in landscape?

Candidates should be aware of the need to adjust tab stops in headers and footers when page orientation is altered, and will be expected to use tabs stops to align their text accurately. The use of tab stops will be apparent on electronically uploaded scripts, so will be used in awarding marks.

How do I create a link to a page opening in a new window?

This means set the target window to a new window name, for example if the question asks for a new window called “CIE”, set target=”_cie” in the source code.

Do my students need to know html?

Yes, a working knowledge of html is important. Students are able to use a WYSIWYG editor for much of the work, but they must be able to edit the html manually and have a limited understanding of the html.

What are widows and orphans in the document production section?

Widows and Orphans relate to how to split a paragraph between two pages when there is space for a paragraph to start near the bottom of one page but not enough space to fit the entire paragraph on that page. A widow is the name for a single line at the bottom of one page when the remainder of the paragraph is on the next page. If there is a single line (at the end of a paragraph on the next page that line is called an orphan.

How can I set a Boolean field type if I use Microsoft Access for the practical examinations?

The term Boolean type in the syllabus refers to a Boolean data type, which for the purposes of the exam could be any field containing ‘bi-polar’ states like True/False, 1/0, Yes/No, which are all stored in the same way within the underlying database. The question papers are not written around any vendor specific products, but we do appreciate that a large number of centres do use products from a single manufacturer. In Access there is no need to convert, a simple Yes/No field would be fine for these examinations.

Is it useful to study RGB colours for the website authoring?

RGB colour codes may appear in either of the practical papers, students need to have an understanding of common component colours and their hexadecimal format.

How precisely do candidates have to match a “bright” blue?

When describing colours for the presentation slides, all that is being looked for are colours that standout against each other, especially if prints are given in grey shades, so words like dark blue, blue or bright blue, pale or light blue are used to indicate those contrasts, but do not require candidates to search colour palettes to look for colours to exactly match those descriptions.

Are students allowed to use brand names in answers to certain questions?

No. For example, where a question requires a type of software to be named they must use the generic term such as word-processing software, desk top publishing software, database software etc. They must not use terms such as Microsoft Word, Publisher, Works etc.

[11] What does “Information” and “Communication” mean in ICT?

[11.1] Information using ICT
In ICT information means a combination of raw data held electromagnetically (for example the number 18) and the meaning the user attaches to it (a dimension in millimeters or miles, a temperature, an age or the purity of a gold, or a measurement of volume).

Data is usually stored in documents or files. Each file, like a filing cabinet draw, is made up of records. Each record is the set of information about a particular ‘thing’, for example a vegetable or car component.

Generic data sources and processing systems are those that are designed for a particular situation, and include:

  • databases – data arranged or organised in, particular way usually to help the user to retrieve more effectively. such as population statistics, GNP, GDP, literacy, mortality, gender and age distribution.
  • Internet – the on-line, that is open to constant change, system of data transfer. Probably the most useful here is the world-wide web, the collection of (millions) of pages of information publicly accessible and arranged as multimedia documents. Here the data must be organised as text with associated images, videos, sounds etc., like a multimedia magazine.
  • Data logging – these are systems which collect their own raw data using electronic sensors, often these are collected in such a way that they can be presented graphically or transferred to another system which might be programmed to activate devices giving computer control (such as a weather station).

Comparing ways of collecting data
Data might be collected in a number of ways and involve different degrees of preparation, special processes and human activity, including generic systems:

  • which collect their own raw data using electronic sensors (such as temperature probes, an anemometer),
  • using data in machine readable form, such as optical character recognition reading printed text into word processor form; this technology is more and more able to read human writing,
  • requiring human input, this might include the use of prepared questionnaires, designed to make later data retrieval or analysis easier (such as surveys of shoppers for a local investigation).

Using ICT to monitor events
Generic data logging systems collect their own raw data using electronic sensors, such as a weather station.

Ways of analyzing data
ICT systems offer a range of generic ‘tools’ to present and analyse data. Data can usually be presented as lists (which can be sorted), graphs of many types (pie charts, bar charts, histograms, scattergrams, line graphs, pictograms, with Cartesian or polar axes, all in 2- or 3D and allowing may annotations and labels), images, sounds, videos, or as signals switching on or off other systems. The medium for analysis can be selected for particular purposes and audiences, this discrimination itself is an important learning activity. Weather and demographic information is often best presented graphically, often with comparisons between parameters.
Data capture and formats will be chosen with the desired method of analysis in mind (such as surveys of road use, weather station data or field work).

Ways of modelling with data
A range of generic applications allow data, provided by the user, a databank or database or otherwise, to represented and varied dynamically to test hypotheses and try out design ideas, this includes:

  • graphical representation (river flow profile),
  • numerical systems (for example a spreadsheet of literacy and mortality of a range of nations, and presented graphically as a scattergraph),
  • hypermedia systems where events can be related and the overall systems explored (investigating global warming and climate change),
  • project management systems (for example planning a IGCSE project)
  • 3D virtual environments (for example using 3D topological representations of map contours)
  • simulations (for example dynamically exploring the water cycle).

[11.2] Communicating using ICT

Class Posters - Landscape_0119

Communicating is possibly the most common application of ICT, including presenting the same information for different users, combining data of different types, communicating ‘live’ (synchronously) or asynchronously, communicating with one other, an identified group or publicly, and communicating personally, locally or at great physical distances. Generic resources for these include:

Word processors
For text, formatted in particular, appropriate ways for different audiences; for example reports on research undertaken and to write letters as part of research.

Presenting numerical information in different ways, including graphs and tables; for example survey data.

This includes software for manipulating images as bit-maps, patterns of pixels (bit graphics) typically known as painting applications; here images are stored in large files as arrays of coloured blocks and when the user ‘zooms in’ or ‘magnifies’ the image the blocks can be clearly seen, straight lines are represented as steps. The type also includes vector graphics, where images are stored as mathematical functions giving lines, vertices, turning points and arcs; here the computer recalculates the lines and curves joining these points so remaining faithful to the original, even when magnified. the files are much smaller but the software is much more complex.

Desktop publishers
Combining text and graphics in the form of images, photographs and clip-art in magazine-type formats; for example developing pamphlets presenting various perspectives on a local environmental issue.

Presentation software
Combining text, graphics, animation, video and sound in a slide-show format; for example a multimedia presentation on urban and rural transport in a number of countries.

Multimedia authoring
Combining text, graphics, animation, video, sound and hypertext to make multimedia resources; for example developing a web page.

Conferencing and video-conferencing
Synchronous or asynchronous discussion between a number of users, with the possible use of video images transmitted between sites.

Users sharing the use of an apparently single screen including controlling the pointer over the Internet; for example brainstorming with colleagues

Electronic mail
Transmission of text messages, and possibly ‘attached’ documents and other files, from one user to another or a number of other users’ mail box(es) across the Internet; for example collaboration with schools in other countries to explore local geology.

Closed or open discussion lists
Communication between interest groups, with members chosen (closed lists) or free to join (open lists), usually with text and about a particular common theme or function; for example discussions within a group interested in tectonic activity.

Bulletin boards
Publicly available (usually) text placed on an Internet site and available to other users to view; for example requests for help with research for a particular project.

Sound and/or video recording and transmission
Using ICT resources to compose, manipulate, reproduce, store and transmit sounds and/or video; for example developing a presentation on interviews with local resident on a particular local issue.

Voice, text and other electronic data (usually via a modem) transmission from one user to another across public telephone systems; for example using a fax machine to research weather.

Used to digitize images for use with ICT, might include optical character recognition; for example exploring deforestation.

Digital still and video cameras
Used to capture and store images for use with ICT; for examples collecting images during fieldwork.

Ways of publishing with ICT
Preparing and presenting information for public access includes two forms:

Paper – these documents can be prepared using word processors and spreadsheets, or where data of different types is to be used, desktop publishers. These generic software types include examples of varying sophistication, facilities and ease of use. For example:

  • word processors
  • spreadsheets
  • desktop publishers

Internet – these documents can be prepared using a text editor and knowledge of hypertext mark-up language (HTML) directly, or can be constructed using a web authoring application which can show the page as it is developed as it will appear through a web browser. Many word processors and multimedia authoring systems include web authoring tools.

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