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This curriculum policy presents the course Digital Technology and Innovations in the Changing World, Grade 10, Open (ICD2O), 2023. This course supersedes the Grade 10 course, Introduction to Computer Studies, outlined in The Ontario Curriculum, Grades 10–12: Computer Studies, 2008. Effective September 2023, all computer studies programs for Grade 10 will be based on the expectations outlined on this site.

In addition to the considerations outlined in this curriculum context, all of the general “Program Planning” sections on this site apply to this course. Educators should review and implement these sections, as well as the components that appear below.

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The vision for this course is for students to develop the knowledge and skills related to digital technology and computer programming that will support them in contributing to and leading the global economic, scientific, and societal innovations of tomorrow. Digital technologies play a major part in all aspects of our lives, and the course supports students in understanding how those digital technologies work and how they can be used and developed for the common good. The course enables students to explore how to use computing and critical thinking to address issues that are meaningful to them and their communities, and how to move from being consumers of digital technologies to becoming empowered creators.

Within the course, students are provided with a substantial level of agency and choice in terms of the contexts, intended users, and purposes of the programming projects they undertake. At the same time, students develop knowledge and skills related to digital technologies in their daily lives, including learning related to the use of hardware and software.

As students consider the use and development of digital technologies, they also analyze a broad range of related social, cultural, economic, environmental, and ethical issues. Through this learning, students develop an understanding of the impact of these technologies at a personal, local, and global level.

Throughout the course, students make important connections to other disciplines and careers, and investigate how various industries are changing as a result of digital technology and programming innovations. Their growing understanding of current and emerging digital technologies prepares students for the changing world and supports them in potentially becoming the digital leaders of tomorrow.

The goals of the Grade 10 course, Digital Technology and Innovations in the Changing World, are to enable all students to:

  • gain an understanding of how digital technologies work, including how they are designed, implemented, and used in society;
  • develop the computational thinking skills needed to design computer programs;
  • develop the foundational programming skills required to read, understand, and write programs;
  • gain perspectives and insights related to social, cultural, economic, environmental, and ethical issues that will support them in making responsible choices with respect to digital technologies;
  • develop lifelong learning skills and insights related to digital technology and innovations that will help them adapt and thrive in the changing world, including the workplace;
  • make connections that will help them better understand digital technology and its influence and impact on their lives and various communities;
  • investigate various career options related to digital technology and programming; and
  • feel empowered to pursue further studies in computer technology and/or computer science.
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This course provides all students with opportunities to appreciate, explore, and discover the power of digital technology and computer programming.

Students live in a world where digital technologies connect us, entertain us, and protect us. These technologies have become powerful aspects of our lives. As such, it is important for students to appreciate their potential benefits and also to think critically about their drawbacks, such as excessive or problematic use. While this course provides students with opportunities to examine important social, cultural, economic, environmental, and ethical issues related to digital technology and computer programming, they are also exposed to the excitement and promise of current, emerging, and future innovations. Students also develop their appreciation of the critical roles of human creativity, empathy, and ethics in digital technology innovations and solutions.

In this course, students are provided with hands-on opportunities to explore the process of designing and creating computational artifacts. Student engagement and inspiration are stimulated as they develop their projects, and students build pride in their accomplishments as they share their creations.

Industries and occupations are continually changing as a result of digital technology innovation. As students enhance their digital technology and programming skills, they are encouraged to consider how they could apply these skills to develop programs that could contribute to the innovations of tomorrow.

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STEM education is the cross-curricular study of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), and the application of those subjects in real-world contexts. As students engage in STEM education, they develop the transferable skills that they need to meet the demands of today’s global economy and society and to become digitally literate citizens.

Skills developed through STEM education include those related to computational thinking and programming. These skills are in high demand in today’s changing world, as digital technologies continue to impact all areas of our lives. In this course, students use computational thinking, design, and programming skills to create computational artifacts. They also connect these skills to other subject areas, and to various careers, including skilled trades, recognizing that digital technology and computer programming have close connections to many areas of STEM.

The integration of knowledge and skills from a number of other STEM-related disciplines into this course can reinforce students’ understanding of each of these disciplines and of the interrelationships among them. Similarly, reflecting on diverse perspectives engages students in a variety of creative and critical-thinking processes that are essential for developing innovative, ethical, and effective responses to various issues.

The weaving of themes and components of STEM education throughout this course is intended to foster creativity, critical thinking, and problem solving. This course also supports the development of digital citizenship in students, enabling them to better appreciate, understand, and responsibly navigate the digital world in which they live.