Archive for July 2007

My impressions on ELT before and after taking the Methodology course

July 1, 2007

Before taking this course I had already had experience on teaching English in different places. I worked at:

– Policia Metropolitana (teaching police officers)

– Liceo Metropolitano

– Maria Auxiliadora school

– Nuestra señora del Carmen school

– CVA downtown

– Loscher Institute

I have to be sincere but I was really empiric when it came to be about doing my job and it was not until I started at “CVA” and later on “Loscher Institute” when I got a formal training on teaching English — I have to say that both trainings and approaches were widely different–. However I had not got and handled such a huge array of information regarding ELT until I took this course at the ped.

 I have learned so much and something which is more important: I have reflected on my teaching performance — especially on my weaknesses– and now I am trying to do my utmost in the current place I am working.

Before taking this course I was one the guys thinking that teaching English was a piece of cake as long as you handle a nice pronunciation, fluency, intonation and a wide vocabulary…

All in all, I can say that nowadays I have realized this is not so true. Teaching English is a demmanding job –as long as you take it for real– so you have to study, train and even research about the way you are intended to perform your teaching activity; and this course have come in handy to improve my performance.

I also would like to thank our teacher for guiding us in this complicated thing which is applying the use of new technologies for our teaching activity.

I have worked with my students using the new technologies and though it has been a little bit messy, most of them have shown a great interest on continuing doing it like this… –next term I am creating a group similar to the one the teacher created to work on their assigments.


What is ICT?

July 1, 2007

(I found this information surfing the net and I think it is a good idea to share it with all of you) 

You see the letters ICT everywhere – particularly in education. But what does it mean? Read our brief introduction to this important and fast-changing subject.

ICT is an acronym that stands for Information Communications Technology However, apart from explaining an acronym, there is not a universally accepted definition of ICT? Why? Because the concepts, methods and applications involved in ICT are constantly evolving on an almost daily basis. Its difficult to keep up with the changes – they happen so fast.Let’s focus on the three words behind ICT:


A good way to think about ICT is to consider all the uses of digital technology that already exist to help individuals, businesses and organizations use information.

ICT covers any product that will store, retrieve, manipulate, transmit or receive information electronically in a digital form. For example, personal computers, digital television, email, robots.So ICT is concerned with the storage, retrieval, manipulation, transmission or receipt of digital data. Importantly, it is also concerned with the way these different uses can work with each other. In business, ICT is often categorized into two broad types of product:

(1) The traditional computer-based technologies (things you can typically do on a personal computer or using computers at home or at work)

– (2) The more recent, and fast-growing range of Digital Communication Technologies (which allow people and organizations to communicate and share information digitally)

Let’s take a brief look at these two categories to demonstrate the kinds of products and ideas that are covered by ICT:

Traditional Computer Based Technologies These types of ICT include:

These types of ICT include:(Application and Use)

Standard Office Applications – Main Examples

Word processing          E.g. Microsoft Word: Write letters, reports etc.

Spreadsheets   E.g. Microsoft Excel; Analyse financial information; calculations; create forecasting models etc.

Database software       E.g. Oracle, Microsoft SQL Server, Access; Managing data in many forms, from basic lists (e.g. customer contacts through to complex material (e.g. catalogue).

Presentation software  E.g. Microsoft PowerPoint; make presentations, either directly using a computer screen or data projector. Publish in digital format via email or over the Internet.

Desktop publishing      E.g. Adobe Indesign, Quark Express, Microsoft Publisher; produce newsletters, magazines and other complex documents.

Graphics software       E.g Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator; Macromedia Freehand and Fireworks; create and edit images such as logos, drawings or pictures for use in DTP, web sites or other publications.

Specialist Applications – Examples (there are many!)

Accounting package     E.g. Sage, Oracle; Manage an organisation’s accounts including revenues/sales, purchases, bank accounts etc. A wide range of systems is available ranging from basic packages suitable for small businesses through to sophisticated ones aimed at multinational companies.

Computer Aided Design           Computer Aided Design (CAD) is the use of computers to assist the design process. Specialised CAD programs exist for many types of design: architectural, engineering, electronics, roadways.

Customer Relations Management (CRM)           Software that allows businesses to better understand their customers by collecting and analysing data on them such as their product preferences, buying habits etc. Often linked to software applications that run call centres and loyalty cards for example.

Digital Communication Based Technologies

The C part of ICT refers to the communication of data by electronic means, usually over some distance. This is often achieved via networks of sending and receiving equipment, wires and satellite links. The technologies involved in communication tend to be complex. You certainly don’t need to understand them for your ICT course. However, there are aspects of digital communications that you needs to be aware of. These relate primarily to the types of network and the ways of connecting to the Internet. Let’s look at these two briefly (further revision notes provide much more detail to support your study).

Internal networks

Usually referred to as a local area network (LAN), this involves linking a number of hardware items (input and output devices plus computer processing) together within an office or building.The aim of a LAN is to be able to share hardware facilities such as printers or scanners, software applications and data. This type of network is invaluable in the office environment where colleagues need to have access to common data or programmes.

External networks

Often you need to communicate with someone outside your internal network, in this case you will need to be part of a Wide Area Network (WAN). The Internet is the ultimate WAN – it is a vast network of networks.ICT in a Broader ContextYour ICT course will almost certainly cover the above examples of ICT in action, perhaps focusing on the use of key applications such as spreadsheets, databases, presentation, graphics and web design software.It will also consider the following important topics that deal with the way ICT is used and managed in an organisation: -The nature of information (the “I” in ICT); this covers topics such as the meaning and value of information; how information is controlled; the limitations of ICT; legal considerations– Management of information – this covers how data is captured, verified and stored for effective use; the manipulation, processing and distribution of information; keeping information secure; designing networks to share information

– Information systems strategy – this considers how ICT can be used within a business or organisation as part of achieving goals and objectivesAs you can see, ICT is a broad and fast-changing subject. We hope our free study materials (revision notes, quizzes, presentations etc) will help you master IT!