Alabama Course of Study - Technology

To download file and print, click 2008 Alabama Course of Study - Technology.
Scope and Sequences (provided by Mountain Brook Schools).
NEW Technology COS - Embedding the Instruction PowerPoint (provided by ALSDE).




2008 Alabama’s K-12 Technology Education Curriculum


General Introduction



Alabama students live in one of the most exciting and ever-changing times in human history, the “information age.”  Indeed, the information age may be as influential in directing the course of human advancement as was the industrial revolution.  As educators, we must ensure that our students are active participants during this time of phenomenal human progress.  Although technology is not a panacea for solving all instructional problems, it equips students with tools that have not existed in the past.  Technology offers students opportunities and possibilities that would not exist without it.  Alabama students should be at the forefront of exploring these technological opportunities and possibilities.


A technology-fluent student demonstrates basic technological operations and concepts; understands human, cultural, and societal issues related to technology; and utilizes technology productivity, communication, collaboration, research, and problem-solving skills.  Technology fluency for all Alabama students is the goal of Alabama’s K-12 Technology Education program.  The Alabama Course of Study:  Technology Education defines the minimum required content that students should know and be able to do to learn effectively and live productively in an increasingly digital world.  Content standards in this document are minimum and required as specified in the Code of Alabama (1975), §16-35-4.  They are fundamental but not exhaustive.  In developing local curriculum, school systems may include additional content standards to reflect local philosophies and add implementation guidelines, resources, and activities, which, by design, are not contained in this document.


The National Educational Technology Standards for Students:  The Next Generation produced by the ISTE has established technology fluency as a national goal, and it continues to be a goal for Alabama students.  Technology fluency enables students to use technology processes and products in everyday life to make informed decisions.  A solid foundation in technology helps students develop and strengthen many of the skills they use daily such as solving problems creatively, thinking critically, and working cooperatively in teams.  The technology-fluent person is more likely to face the challenges of a dynamic global society with confidence.  Moreover, the economic productivity of Alabama is linked to the technological requirements of the workforce.  To help students achieve technology fluency and make informed decisions, the K-12 Technology Education program places a renewed emphasis on the importance of authentic integration of technology every day in every grade and subject.

Alabama’s K-12 Technology Education Curriculum


Conceptual Framework



Technology fluency as depicted across the center of the globe on the conceptual framework graphic on page 3 is the overall goal of Alabama’s Technology Education curriculum.  The goal appears in a prominent position to reflect its importance in directing the structure and content of this course of study to ensure the best possible technology education program for all Alabama students.  Technology-fluent students are proficient in operating technology systems and in conducting research using digital tools.  In addition, they are able to use digital tools to solve real-world problems, collaborate with others, and create simulations.


The conceptual framework graphic succinctly summarizes the structure and goal of technology education in Alabama.  Links radiating from the highlighted state of Alabama represent a digital connection of Alabama’s students to other parts of the world.  The circuit board, serving as the background or the framework, is the foundation for all technology systems.  Likewise, the academic content standards in this course of study serve as the foundation for Alabama students to become technologically fluent.


To face the many challenges of a global society, Alabama students must be given every opportunity to achieve technology fluency.  The need for Alabama students to succeed in an increasingly digital world is represented by the global impression on the graphic representation of the conceptual framework.  The technology content standards are organized into six distinct strands—Technology Operations and Concepts; Digital Citizenship; Research and Information Fluency; Communication and Collaboration; Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making; and Creativity and Innovation.  These strands are symbolized in the conceptual framework on the flexible cable that wraps around the globe¯a symbol that represents the interconnectedness of the strands.  Just as cables are one or more fibers bound together with a common sheath, or for a common purpose, the strands represented in this document are bound together for the common goal of student achievement of technology fluency.  As it is often necessary for cables to be flexible, it is necessary to be flexible in teaching the content standards in this document, which by design are not listed in sequential order, but rather, grouped by strands.


Content standards build on each succeeding grade level, eliminating repetition from one grade or course to another.  For example, standards in the Creativity and Innovation strand progress from designing original works using digital tools in Grades K-2 and creating a product using digital tools in Grades 3-5 to using digital tools to generate new ideas, products, or processes in Grades 6-8, and creating an interactive, digital product using programming logic in the Computer Applications course.  Similar progressions are found in each of the other five strands.  While students achieve technology fluency at varying degrees throughout the grades, the content standards establish the minimum required content that all students should master.


The goal for the technology education curriculum is interwoven throughout the six strands of the technology education content standards.  The standards address each level of instruction with an increase in depth and rigor from the primary grades through high school.  This curriculum, when combined with effective instruction, enables students to achieve the overall goal for technology education in Alabama, technology fluency.



Position Statements



Keyboard Utilization


Students must be able to use computers and other technologies as tools for productivity and creativity.  In order for them to be productive, keyboarding skills emphasizing accuracy and technique must be introduced in Grades K-2 with keyboarding proficiency demonstrated by the completion of Grade 8.  Although new and emerging technology systems are not limited to the traditional computer keyboard, inadequate keyboarding skills may diminish a student’s ability to operate some technology systems.  Keyboarding is a kinesthetic skill acquired through systematic, repetitive instruction in touch-typing.  Therefore, sporadic access to a computer hinders the development of keyboarding skills.


Various levels of keyboard utilization are included in the Alabama Course of Study: Technology Education.  Local school systems are encouraged to use this document in designing and implementing a scope and sequence plan for appropriate skill development.



Global Awareness


It is essential that today’s students possess technology skills needed to compete in an increasingly competitive global marketplace marked by rapid change.  In order to become global citizens in a highly technological society, students must be given every opportunity to become technologically fluent.  The Alabama Course of Study: Technology Education document provides the foundation for students to acquire these skills.



Professional Development


Content standards in this course of study illustrate the need for well-trained, highly-qualified classroom teachers who design, develop, and facilitate effective learning in technology.  Skills required for mastering the rigor contained in these standards can most successfully be modeled for Alabama’s students by teachers who possess a strong technological foundation.  Local school systems should provide opportunities for ongoing professional development opportunities for all teachers.  In addition, teachers are encouraged to continue to update technology skills through active participation in local, state, and national technology organizations as well as serve as mentors to those new to the profession.  Alabama students deserve capable educators who have a deep and broad understanding of technology and who seek to continue their professional growth.



Local Waivers for the Computer Applications Course


Local education agencies (LEAs) may waive the required Computer Applications course for students if competencies outlined in the course are demonstrated to qualified staff.  If LEAs choose to waive the Computer Applications course, the LEAs should design and implement effective tools for assessing student proficiency in competencies outlined in the Alabama Course of Study: Technology Education document.  A comprehensive portfolio of digital works such as simulations and other projects may provide a meaningful assessment of these technology competencies.  Since change in technology occurs at such a rapid pace, technology fluency requires lifelong learning.  Therefore, LEAs are encouraged to offer higher-level technology courses for students demonstrating the competencies outlined in the Computer Applications course.  In this way, students have additional opportunities to expand technology knowledge and skills.



Cyber Safety


The Internet is an important educational resource that has become commonplace in America’s classrooms.  Teachers, when assigning Internet research, have the added responsibility of teaching cyber safety.  The Alabama Course of Study: Technology Education document provides cyber safety standards in each cluster that address protection of personal information and avoidance of online predators and cyberbullying.  LEAs should establish and strictly enforce local guidelines for Internet use by students.  With these guidelines in mind, students and teachers can make optimal use of technology in learning.



Equitable Access


Technology education offers powerful opportunities for reaching, motivating, and teaching all students in all grades.  Regardless of background or ability, all students deserve an opportunity to become technologically fluent.  Frequent and reliable access to current and emerging technologies and digital resources should be provided for ALL students in Alabama.



Integration of Technology


Alabama’s goal of technology fluency for every student necessitates seamless integration of technology and twenty-first century skills throughout the curricula.  The immersion of technology into the curriculum provides an engaging means for students to locate, assemble, and apply relevant information to make connections with essential knowledge.  Effectively integrating technology can extend learning beyond the classroom to ensure that all students achieve the technology fluency necessary to succeed in a global society.





Twenty-first century skills are not adequately measured using twentieth-century assessments such as paper and pencil objective tests.  Technology skills are inherently performance skills and must be evaluated through project- or problem-based assessments, which could be included in a digital portfolio format.  While it is important for students to demonstrate technology fluency through performance to meet the high school graduation requirement for one-half credit in computer applications, it is moreimportant for students to apply technology knowledge and skills to problem solving to be better prepared for tomorrow’s workforce.

Kindergarten – Second Grade Overview



Students in primary grades are developing self-concepts, motor skills, and social relationships.  They need opportunities for first-hand experiences in solving problems and manipulating real objects.  Language development is an integral part of their learning experience.


Young students learn best through exploration and interaction with peers and adults.  Technology lends itself to this style of learning.  Developmentally appropriate activities should be planned to provide students with opportunities to utilize technology skills as they accomplish curriculum objectives.


Digital media content provides broad experiences through video, images, and sounds from around the world.  Open-ended software allows students to practice problem solving in safe, creative environments.  The use of interactive Web sites creates interest in reading and develops decoding and comprehension skills.  Written and verbal expression is enhanced through multimedia presentations; desktop publishing of students’ creative writing; and videotaping of show and tell, drama, and poetry recitations.  Students become accustomed to utilizing technology tools when technology is integrated into a variety of learning situations.


Effective teachers help students construct knowledge from information gathered from online curriculum projects, electronic databases, and other technology resources supported by productivity software such as graphing and drawing tools.  Responsible, ethical, and safe use of technology systems is modeled by the teacher and internalized by students as they begin their journey into the global community as digital citizens.


The inherent motivation created by using digital tools can increase students’ interest and excitement for learning.  Technology education equips them with skills that will enhance not only their formal educational years but also their professional and personal lives.



Kindergarten – Second Grade



Technology Operations and Concepts


Students will:


     1.           Identify basic parts of various technology systems.

·         Naming input and output devices

Examples:  input—keyboard, stylus



     2.             Identify applications and operations of various technology systems.

Examples:  applications—word processing, multimedia presentation software
operations—opening, closing, and saving files


·         Using accurate terminology related to technology

Example:   “press,” not “hit,” keys

·         Using input devices to enter letters, numbers, and symbols

·         Using special functions of input devices

Example:   keyboard shortcuts

·         Labeling storage media

·         Removing storage media safely


     3.           Demonstrate correct posture and finger placement while using a technology system.



Digital Citizenship


     4.           Identify safe use of technology systems and applications.

Examples:  protecting personal information online, avoiding inappropriate sites, exiting inappropriate sites


     5.           Practice responsible use of technology systems and applications.

Example:   maintaining proper settings


·         Demonstrating care of digital equipment and media

Examples:  washing hands before use, cleaning work area before and after use

·         Distinguishing between ethical and unethical uses of others’ work

Examples:  avoiding plagiarism, avoiding manipulation of others’ work without


     6.           Identify uses of technology systems in daily living.



Research and Information Fluency


     7.           Use digital tools to access and retrieve information.

Examples:  online libraries, multimedia dictionaries, search engines, directories


·         Evaluating accuracy of digital content

Example:   determining fact versus opinion



Communication and Collaboration


     8.           Use digital environments to exchange ideas with individuals or groups.

Examples:  other states, other countries


·         Producing digital works collaboratively

Examples:  developing shared writing projects, creating language experience stories



Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making


     9.           Identify digital tools used for problem solving.

Examples:  spell check, digital graphic organizers, electronic drawing programs, simulation software



Creativity and Innovation


 10.           Design original works using digital tools.

Examples:  tools—digital drawing tools, music software, word processing software, digital cameras



Third – Fifth Grade Overview



Students in Grades 3-5 begin to expand their horizons and exercise more independent thought and action.  Many opportunities to utilize technology should be provided for students to work collaboratively and independently to accomplish authentic tasks.  Research conducted through digital communities and interaction with experts in specialized fields of study sharpens skills needed across all curriculum areas, including data analysis, problem solving, reading for meaning, organizing information, and drawing conclusions.  Students begin to use digital resources more independently to conduct searches required for completing task assignments.  This naturally leads to discussion of safe, legal, and ethical use of information and judgments as to the value of information found in digital sources.


Activities using information drawn from digital sources lend structure to projects while remaining open-ended enough to encourage critical thinking and allow for pursuit of individual interests.  Students at this age are becoming more literate regarding the use of a variety of technology that enables them to express themselves through original compositions and illustrations. 


A technology-infused curriculum cultivates an atmosphere rich with motivation and interest in which students thrive intellectually and emotionally.  Technology and academic skills mastered at this level provide the basis for future learning experiences.

Third – Fifth Grade



Technology Operations and Concepts


Students will:


     1.           Use input and output devices of technology systems.

Examples:  input—recording devices, keyboards, touchscreeens



·         Demonstrating ergonomics relative to technology systems

·         Demonstrating correct keyboarding techniques

·         Demonstrating safe removal of storage media


     2.           Use various technology applications, including word processing and multimedia software.

·         Using navigational features commonly found in technology applications

·         Identifying digital file types


     3.           Identify common hardware and software problems.

·         Determining basic troubleshooting strategies to correct hardware and software problems


     4.           Identify various operating systems of technology devices.



Digital Citizenship


     5.           Practice safe use of technology systems and applications.

Examples:  protecting personal information online, avoiding inappropriate sites, exiting inappropriate sites


     6.           Describe social and ethical behaviors related to technology use.

Examples:  social—developing positive attitudes towards using technology collaboratively

ethical—citing sources of text and digital content, avoiding plagiarism, avoiding manipulation of others’ work without permission


·         Describing the global nature of the Internet

·         Following local acceptable use policies regarding technology

·         Identifying intrusive applications, including worms, viruses, spyware, and pop-up advertisements


     7.           Explain the influence of technology on society.

Examples:  multiple digital communities, medical and agricultural advancements



Research and Information Fluency


     8.           Collect information from a variety of digital sources.

Examples:  online libraries, multimedia dictionaries


·         Using technology tools to organize information

·         Demonstrating efficient Internet search strategies

Example:    keyword search

·         Evaluating electronic resources for reliability based on publication date, bias, accuracy, and source credibility


     9.           Use technology tools to organize, interpret, and display data.

Examples:  spreadsheets, databases, electronic graphing tools



Communication and Collaboration


 10.           Use digital environments to collaborate and communicate.

Examples:  publishing online journals, sharing presentations, contributing to online discussions, communicating with experts


·         Producing digital works collaboratively

Examples:  developing shared writing projects and group multimedia projects



Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making


 11.           Use digital tools to analyze authentic problems.

Examples:  electronic graphing tools, concept mapping software


 12.           Create a product using digital tools.

Examples:  products—digital story, podcast, digital artwork



Sixth – Eighth Grade Overview



Students in Grades 6-8 possess a wide range of intellectual abilities, learning styles, talents, and interests.  These students are experiencing a transitional period that includes physical, social, emotional, and intellectual changes.  In addition, students are developing skills to function in a technological society.


The technology content standards for Grades 6-8 are designed to complement all areas of the academic curriculum.  In a world where information increases exponentially, students are expected to develop and use critical-thinking and decision-making skills.  Digital tools enhance middle school students’ emerging abilities to analyze, synthesize, and evaluate information.  The integration of technology systems expands and optimizes their ability to use information and to communicate and collaborate with diverse individuals.  It is critical for students at these grade levels to expand the knowledge and skills necessary for solving both hypothetical and authentic problems.


In a global world community, students are expected to be responsible digital citizens who practice safe, legal, and responsible use of technology systems and digital media.  Students must comprehend the impact of technology on the cultural, social, economic, environmental, and political aspects of society.  Positive attitudes toward technology use are essential to support collaboration, learning, and productivity for success in the twenty-first century.



Sixth – Eighth Grade



Technology Operations and Concepts


Students will:


     1.           Appraise technology systems to determine software and hardware compatibility.


     2.           Publish digital products that communicate curriculum concepts.

Examples:  Web pages, videos, podcasts, multimedia presentations


     3.           Explain how network systems are connected and used.

Examples:  file sharing, collaborating, wireless networking


     4.           Determine basic troubleshooting strategies to correct common hardware and software problems.

Examples:  checking connections, restarting equipment, creating a backup copy of digital data


·         Describing the importance of antivirus and security software


     5.           Use basic features of word processing, spreadsheets, databases, and presentation software.

Examples:  word processing—reports, letters, brochures

spreadsheets—discovering patterns, tracking spending, creating budgets

databases—contact list of addresses and phone numbers

presentation software—slideshow


     6.           Select specific digital tools for completing curriculum-related tasks.

Examples:  spreadsheet for budgets, word processing software for essays, probes for data collection


     7.           Demonstrate correct keyboarding techniques.



Digital Citizenship


     8.           Identify safe uses of social networking and electronic communication.

·         Recognizing dangers of online predators

·         Protecting personal information online


     9.           Practice responsible and legal use of technology systems and digital content.

Examples:  avoiding plagiarism; complying with acceptable use policies, copyright laws, and fair use standards; recognizing secure Web sites


·         Identifying examples of computer crime and related penalties

Examples:   computer crime—phishing, spoofing, virus and worm

                         dissemination, cyberbullying

penalties—fines, incarceration

·         Citing sources of digital content


 10.           Describe advances in technology and the effects of each on the workplace and society.

Examples:  agriculture, manufacturing, medicine, warfare, transportation, communication, education



Research and Information Fluency


 11.           Use digital tools and strategies to locate, collect, organize, evaluate, and synthesize information.

Examples:  locate—Boolean searches, graphic organizers, spreadsheets, databases
collect—probeware, graphing calculators
organize—graphic organizers, spreadsheet
evaluate—reviewing publication dates, determining credibility
synthesize—word processing software, concept-mapping software



Communication and Collaboration


 12.           Use digital tools to communicate and collaborate at all levels from interpersonal to global.

Examples:  instant messages, e-mail, blogs, wikis, collaborative authoring tools, online learning communities


·         Demonstrating digital file transfer

Examples:  attaching, uploading, downloading



Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making


 13.           Use digital tools to formulate solutions to authentic problems.

Examples:  electronic graphing tools, probes, spreadsheets



Creativity and Innovation


 14.           Use digital tools to generate new ideas, products, or processes.

Examples:  ideas—predictions, trends
products—animation, video
processes—models, simulations



Ninth – Twelfth Grade Overview



Students in Grades 9-12 experience significant growth and development as they assume more complex responsibilities such as working and making career choices.  They are continuing to develop unique personalities and are making important life decisions.  High school students are strengthening and practicing leadership and interpersonal communication skills in the school and community that facilitate entrance into adulthood.  They continue to experience physical and emotional changes as well as seek opportunities for realizing independence and individuality.


Grades 9-12 students have broadened their perspective regarding the importance of existing and developing technologies and have an understanding of the scope of technology in today’s world.  As students progress through the high school years, they are able to address a variety of problems on a variety of topics in a logical manner.  Technology offers students an efficient means by which many types of problems may be solved.


Because of cultural and ideological diversity in a technologically-advanced global society, many students have opportunities to interact with others whose backgrounds are different from their own.  As the use of technology brings humankind closer together, concepts and skills addressed in the Computer Applications course will assist students in developing skills necessary for becoming productive adults.


The Computer Applications course is designed to provide students with technology fluency appropriate for the twenty-first century.  This fluency includes the knowledge of current technology systems as well as the skills and attitudes necessary to adopt new technologies and systems as they emerge.  Additional components of the course equip students with the ability to conduct research and solve problems; demonstrate creative thinking and develop innovative products; practice safe, ethical, and legal use of technology systems; and use technology and information to communicate and collaborate at all levels from interpersonal to global.


The content standards in this course include hands-on, practical pursuits that extend beyond the computer classroom or laboratory.  Course content is integrated into other curricular areas to allow students to reinforce and expand technology competencies.  As students become proficient users of computers and other technologies in the classroom, the benefits of using these tools for researching, analyzing, and synthesizing information beyond the classroom become evident.  Technology-fluent students realize that technology tools and resources enhance not only educational endeavors but also personal and professional success as well.

Computer Applications



Technology Operations and Concepts


Student will:


     1.           Explain data encryption procedures.


     2.           Diagnose hardware and software problems.

Examples:  viruses, error messages


·         Applying strategies to correct malfunctioning hardware and software

·         Performing routine hardware maintenance

·         Describing the importance of antivirus and security software


   3.       Demonstrate advanced technology skills, including compressing, converting, importing, exporting, and backing up files..

·         Transferring data among applications

·         Demonstrating digital file transfer

Examples:  attaching, uploading, downloading


     4.           Utilize advanced features of word processing software, including outlining, tracking changes, hyperlinking, and mail merging.


     5.           Utilize advanced features of spreadsheet software, including creating charts and graphs, sorting and filtering data, creating formulas, and applying functions.


     6.           Utilize advanced features of multimedia software, including image, video and, audio editing.


     7.           Utilize advanced features of database software, including sorting, filtering, querying, merging data, and creating reports.


     8.           Practice safe uses of social networking and electronic communication.

·         Recognizing dangers of online predators

·         Protecting personal information online

Example:   recognizing risk of identity theft



Digital Citizenship


     9.           Practice ethical and legal use of technology systems and digital content.

·         Explaining consequences of illegal and unethical use of technology systems and digital content

Examples:  cyberbullying, plagiarism

·         Interpreting copyright laws and policies with regard to ownership and use of digital content

·         Citing sources of digital content using a style manual

Examples:  Modern Language Association (MLA), American Psychological Association (APA)

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