Unplugged Teaching: Deepening Information Technology Learning

Reuben Dlamini, Alton Dewa
2022 Open Journal of Social Sciences  
There has been a decline in the number of public schools in South Africa offering information technology as a subject, yet it holds a special significance in higher level computational courses especially at tertiary level. Learners doing programming in information technology (IT) have difficulties during the initial stages of learning how to design and develop programs due to the abstract nature of the subject and the demands on the use of data structures to establish needed heuristics to solve
more » ... problems or design solutions. Through the Semantic wave code of Legitimation Code Theory lens, this research aims to address the cognitive aspects of deeper information technology learning especially acquiring the appropriate knowledge structures for program design and problem-solving. The abstract semantics are the cornerstone of information technology as a school subject and their difficulty may cause memory overload, hence the importance of mental structures on how computers work. Through the semantic wave construct of the Legitimation Code Theory, we unpacked unfamiliar settings and repacked the different settings by moving from simpler meanings [concrete] to complex meanings [abstract]. In this work, we discuss issues that make programming more accessible by navigating the abstract semantics using contextualised exploration giving learners' concretized understanding while placing them in unfamiliar settings requiring creativity. Importantly, this work builds on researched literature and experience as information technology subject specialists explaining how we subject learners through various context and semantic profiles due to the multi-level nature of abstraction in programming.
doi:10.4236/jss.2022.104034 fatcat:aejoyz2emnbp3b5xpsazasjypu