Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Systems and Design in Technology

Wayne Lang
Technology Coordinator and Trainer in the Rapid City Area School District

Strand 1 of the new technology standards (Nature and Concepts of Technology) relies heavily on systems thinking and design. Educational technology fits well into Information and Communication Technologies. There is so much change coming that we need to find out how to deal with teaching our kids.
Strand 1 includes:
History and Progression
Relationships with other fields

System is made up of several parts that all work together. We are surrounded by all kinds of systems. Systems help us to see how individual parts work together, understand complicated things, and deal with future changes.

System thinking can be broken down to the simple model of input, process, and output. Feedback is also a necessary element to make certain the system works.

How do we use this model? Relate the to the student world. Introduce – Plan – Analyze
Use the system all the time and kids will start thinking that way.

It could take between 7 and 20 years of students being exposed to systems thinking before it really pays off.

The Design Process (Technological Method)
Define the problem
Gather information
Generate alternatives
Select the best solution
Produce the solution
Test and evaluate the solution
Report the results

Wayne did a wonderful job explaining the systems thinking method.

For more resources, see Wayne’s website:

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