In this course you’ll focus on how technology-enabled communication is changing geopolitics and, more broadly, how technology is connecting our world and changing lives. This will be done through a series of paired teaching sections, exploring a specific “Impact of Computing” in your typical day and the “Technologies and Computing Concepts” that enable that impact, all at a K12-appropriate level.
This course is part of a larger Specialization through which you’ll learn impacts of computing concepts you need to know, organized into 5 distinct digital “worlds”, as well as learn pedagogical techniques and evaluate lesson plans and resources to utilize in your classroom. By the end, you’ll be prepared to teach pre-college learners to be both savvy and effective participants in their digital world.
In this particular digital world (global society), you’ll explore the following Impacts & Technology pairs —
Impacts (Freedom of Speech): Internet in third world countries, censorship, and social media
Technology and Computing Concepts: VPN, how Internet censorship works, metadata, tor
Impacts (Life Made Easy): Internet changing the way we live, travel, autonomous vehicles
Technology and Computing Concepts: Internet of things, how self-driving cars work
Impacts (Keeping Your Information Secure): two-factor authentication, PINs, Patterns, fingerprints, apple ID
Technology and Computing Concepts: DDoS attacks and Botnets, man-in-the-middle attacks, dangers of public Wifi, phishing, ransomware, bitcoin
In the pedagogy section for this course, in which best practices for teaching computing concepts are explored, you’ll learn about the principles of the computer science advanced placement exam, how it assesses students, and how to prepare your students for this critical exam.
In terms of CSTA K-12 computer science standards, we’ll primarily cover learning objectives within the “impacts of computing” concept, while also including some within the “networks and the Internet” concepts and the “data and analysis” concept. Practices we cover include “fostering and inclusive computing culture”, “recognizing and defining computational problems”, and “communicating about computing”.
Welcome! Are you interested in teaching about the impacts of the technology you use everyday? To learn more about the computation and computing concepts that underlie those technologies? We'll be using a problem-based approach to explore interesting ways to teach concepts of networks and the internet, data and analysis, and even algorithms and data representation. Finally, we'll evaluate, critique and improve a TedED activity around the ethical choices facing designers of self-driving cars.
Freedom of Speech
Have you ever thoughts of technology as a support or amplification of free speech? No need to get a news program or journalist to "get your story out there" when you can tweet! But not everyone on the planet has equal access to the internet or apps that enable people to share their viewpoints. We'll look at a range of technologies related (in some way!) to this including: VPN, cell phone batteries, and internet connectivity at the global scale.
Life Made Easy
How has technology made your life easier? One thing I love is that travel, including traveling outside of my home country has gotten a LOT easier -- just because I can use my smartphone to find information and directions when I am abroad! But there's other ways global, ubiquitous access to the internet and cheap computational devices is changing our lives. Super hot things right now are "the Internet of Things" -- and specifically self-driving cars. Let's learn more about them!
Keeping your Information Secure
As our individual data generation and collection grows, so does the collective amount of data stored in the world. Controlling access and maintaining the privacy of our data -- especially as we use our myriad of devices in places far outside our own homes over wireless connections -- is critical. We'll also toss in here the concept of having a secure form of money -- bitcoin!
Impacts of Computing & Pedagogy
There is no background knowledge, neither in education nor in Computer Science, required to take this course - just an interest in learning computational concepts about the technology that surrounds us and how to best teach those concepts to others.
Basic proficiency in the use of Googledocs will be needed to complete assignments within the course. Google help documentation will be provided, and with some extra attention, first time use of Googledocs should not be a barrier to successful completion of the course.