My digital life – TU100

My digital life

My digital life taken on a journey from the origins of information technology through to the familiar computers of today, and on to tomorrow’s radical technologies. Getting hands-on experience of programming and of how computing is changing. Also learning about the profound social and technological changes associated with information technology – changes that affect every one of us.

What I studied

The module was structured into six study blocks that lead me from how digital technologies relate to us as individuals, through how computers and networks allow us to interact with others, and finally computing technologies as applied across the world. Throughout the module, I developed programming skills and study skills.

The blocks are:

Block 1: Myself

Starting with our own activities in consuming, processing and publishing information, learning the basic concepts of data and information. Moving on to look at the underlying structure of the internet and the software that interacts with it. Also creating simple web pages, and learnt some basic programming skills.

Block 2: My stuff

Investigate the development of the hardware and software at the heart of the many everyday devices that contain a computer, from smart meters to cars. Introduced to the skills needed to interpret data, and learnt how to find, assess and discuss material on the Web and elsewhere.

Block 3: My place

Computing power is present in a wide range of everyday objects and environments, from mobile phones and satellite navigation devices to health monitoring and central heating systems. Using examples from these areas, see how large- and small-scale networks are used to link devices and allow information to flow between individuals, networks and countries.

Block 4: My friends

Studying the social aspects of computer technology, looking at how we communicate using social networking, real-time chat, forums, virtual worlds and computer games. Learning how to create and share audio-visual content, and how the skills are developing –working and communicating with others online – can be of value in the workplace.

Block 5: My society

Study how the growth of the electronic society affects us all, positively and negatively, using five perspectives – governmental, individual, technical, commercial and ethical. Using case studies that focus on the legal and ethical aspects of a digital life, such as encryption and copyright. Learning how to form arguments from conflicting evidence and producing my own researched opinion on a controversial topic.

Block 6: My world

This final block will draw together the various themes studied so far and use them to look at how the world is rapidly changing, as computing technologies are being developed and applied. Using several case studies, examine the implications of the ‘digital divide’, and how it might be overcome.

Throughout the study of the module developed a wide range of skills for higher-level study. This includes programming via a purpose-built graphical programming environment.

Skills

Knowledge and understanding

  •  A basic understanding of some fundamental technological concepts, principles, techniques and terminology associated with computers and digital communication, at both the individual and the system level
  •  An awareness of how information and communication technologies are used
  •  An understanding of the role of standards and why they are needed
  •  An awareness of major developments and trends in processing, storing and communicating information
  •  An awareness of the implications for societies of some major trends in information and communication technologies.

Cognitive skills

  • Evaluate evidence relating to social, economic, political and personal issues raised by the processing and communication of information.
  • Analyse a simple problem and identify the operations required for a solution.
  • Given a specification, modify existing and build new small applications using modelling, diagramming and coding.
  • Discuss legal and ethical issues raised by the processing, storage and communication of information, making reasoned arguments about these issues.

Key skills

  • Demonstrate study skills at a level appropriate to higher education, such as study planning, learning from feedback and reading actively.
  • Understand the strengths and needs of your own learning and identify opportunities for personal and professional development.
  • Use appropriate numerical and mathematical skills to carry out calculations and analyse data for a given purpose, select information from a variety of sources, including the Web, and present it appropriately in textual and visual form.
  • Communicate accurately and reliably, in a structured and coherent fashion, recognising purpose and audience.

Practical and professional skills

  • Interact with others at a distance using communication technology.
  • Use information literacy skills, computers and software packages appropriate to the workplace.
  • Build small computer-based systems from pre-existing components.
 
About this course:
Course code TU100
Credits 60
OU Level 1
SCQF level 7
FHEQ level 4
Course work includes:
6 Tutor-marked assignments (TMAs)
My Results
Tutor-marked assignments 1 90%
Tutor-marked assignments 2 90%
Tutor-marked assignments 3 90%
Tutor-marked assignments 4 88%
Tutor-marked assignments 5 91%
Tutor-marked assignments 6 Distinction

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