IT Exploration has everything a K12 educator needs to prepare students for career success!
Developed by the Minnesota State IT Center of Excellence, IT Exploration is a FREE curriculum and teacher training program that covers IT fundamentals of software development, networking, hardware, security, analytics, game design, digital citizenship, tech careers, and more. The extensive, engaging content aligns with Precision Exams – Information Technology Introduction (801). During the past seven years, over 200 educators have successfully implemented ITX curricula at their respective institutions.
Secondary and postsecondary teachers pose with ITX trainers during a recent training event at Hennepin Technical College in Eden Prairie
We are excited to announce that the new IT Exploration (ITX) 3.0 curriculum is everything a secondary and postsecondary education teacher needs; it comes just in time for the 2018-19 school year. ITX has experienced an extensive facelift; now aligning beautifully with Precision Exams and Information Technology Introduction (801). The curriculum resides on a teacher-friendly STEM Fuse portal, making it super easy for novice to experienced technology teachers to access curriculum, training, and support for FREE.
What’s included in ITX 3.0:
Year and semester-long courses and assessments
Curriculum that can be used as a stand-alone course, or supplement existing coursework
Hands-on learning and relevant materials
ITX offers market relevant educational materials to prepare secondary and postsecondary students for success in a fast-changing technological world. The program can be enlivened through the engagement of area employers and IT professionals. ITX prepares students for higher education and career success in high-demand technology jobs.
IT Exploration content is developed to prepare students for Precision Exams, Information Technology Introduction (801) and includes ITX Teacher Overview Guides regarding:
Standard 1 – Trends and Impacts of Computing
Standard 2 – Digital Media
Standard 3 – Computing Systems and IT Services
Standard 4 – Networks and the Internet
Standard 5 – Algorithms and Programming
Standard 6 – Data and Analysis
Standard 7 – Technology Careers
Bonus features: The Office Productivity module provides foundational knowledge in the areas of basic computer skills, the internet, Windows OS, Mac OS, email, word processing, social media, spreadsheets, slideshows, and information literacy. The Game Development & Design unit in the IT Exploration course is brought to you by STEM Fuse! Students are introduced to the world of programming and game design through interactive learning lessons and hands-on projects. Students begin by learning about the fundamentals of game development and design; what goes into a great game, video game history, and popular engines used to build games. They then build a simple game and end the unit by learning about game design and programming careers! To learn more about full semester programming and game development courses, visit Stem Fuse to learn about our K-12 GAME:IT series!
According to computer science teacher, ITX trainer and support specialist Cindy Drahos, “the revised curriculum increases student engagement strategies with relevant activities and career awareness in all areas of IT. According to Glassdoor, 13 of the 25 highest-paying U.S. jobs for 2018 are in tech per a CompTIA article dated August 14, 2018. The ITX curriculum really hits the mark! Students learn new technology skills and explore in-demand jobs and careers. I'm learning something new every day and I'm the teacher.”
Training and support is provided by ITX power-users Cindy Drahos, Burnsville High School, and Amanda Mackereth, Spectrum High School in Elk River. The curriculum was updated based on user feedback and standards alignment. When asked what aspects of a recent ITX 3.0 training were most useful, some of the teacher comments from an August 14th training were:
“appreciated the hands-on at the computer”
“learning how easy this course would be to incorporate into current classes”
“seeing the curriculum in action and the overview of how it all worked together”
“[now] I just need time to dig in”
According to ITX trainer and support specialist Amanda Mackereth, "IT Exploration's new alignment with Precision Exams has given me a scope and sequence to follow as I create my curriculum maps for our technology courses at my school. Our school teaches the components of the ITX curriculum over the course of two semester-long classes in 8th and 9th grade. There is more than enough here now for teachers to teach a full year course or to pick and choose how they want to prioritize the standards within their shorter courses."
"My students are excited about having a lot more hands-on, interactive lessons! This course gives them a great introduction to a variety of careers in IT as well as how IT skills fit into almost every career out there in this 21st Century digital world."
ITX Demonstration – see what’s got everyone excited: The ITX curriculum will be demonstrated at the CTE Works! Summit 2018 at the Minneapolis Marriott Northwest in Brooklyn Park, MN on October 30th, 4:30-5:30pm. To register for the full-day CTE Summit, visit CTE Works Minnesota.
The next ITX training will occur in early December 5, 2018 — Stay tuned for more details!
ABOUT IT EXPLORATION
ITX is a FREE curriculum and teacher training program that covers IT fundamentals of software development, networking, hardware, security, analytics, game design, digital citizenship, tech careers, and more. The extensive, engaging content aligns with Precision Exams – Information Technology Introduction (801).
ABOUT MINNESOTA STATE IT CENTER OF EXCELLENCE
Formerly known as Advance IT Minnesota, the MN State – IT Center of Excellence engages employers, educators, technology professionals and learners to develop a more robust IT workforce in Minnesota. A Center of Excellence within the Colleges and Universities of Minnesota State (formerly MnSCU), it is located at Metropolitan State University, St. Paul Midway campus. For more information, visit the IT Center of Excellence.