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Understand the Australian Curriculum: Digital Technologies

Australian Digital Technologies Curriculum:

Specification

Defining a problem precisely and clearly, identifying the requirements, and breaking it down into manageable pieces.

Specification
F-2 Unpack > 3-4 Unpack > 5-6 Unpack > 7-8 Unpack > 9-10 Unpack >

F-2

Follow, describe and represent a sequence of steps and decisions (algorithms) needed to solve simple problems (ACTDIP004)

3-4

Define simple problems, and describe and follow a sequence of steps and decisions (algorithms) needed to solve them (ACTDIP010)

5-6

Define problems in terms of data and functional requirements drawing on previously solved problems (ACTDIP017)

7-8

Define and decompose real-world problems taking into account functional requirements and economic, environmental, social, technical and usability constraints (ACTDIP027)

9-10

Define and decompose real-world problems precisely, taking into account functional and non-functional requirements and including interviewing stakeholders to identify needs (ACTDIP038)

Problem definition

Problem definition is the process we follow and considerations we make to determine and describe the problems we intend to solve.

F-2

Familiar problems

Simple problems that are already familiar to students.

Students investigate familiar and easily understood problems, with few complications or steps required to solve them (e.g. deciding what to wear depending on the day and weather).

3-4

Familiar problems

Simple problems that are already familiar to students.

Students recognise a range of problems, and can define achievable solutions to their own problems (e.g. buying presents for family members within a budget)

Describe problems

Determining the nature and description of a problem to be solved.

Students answer guiding questions (e.g. which family members need presents? What is the budget?) and then write a problem statement (e.g. I need to buy presents for mum, dad and my sister for less than $30).

5-6

Describe problems

Determining the nature and description of a problem to be solved.

Students use provided stimulus (e.g. newspaper articles, information brochures) to identify a problem and write a problem statement (e.g. people get hurt in bushfires when they are unprepared. How can we help them be better prepared?)

7-8

Describe problems

Determining the nature and description of a problem to be solved.

Students frame a problem in terms of what we know, why it is important, and the outcome we want (e.g. obesity is increasing in Australia. It can lead to long-term health problems. How can we encourage people to be healthier?)

9-10

Describe problems

Determining the nature and description of a problem to be solved.

Students define the problem more exactly (e.g. how do we encourage people to balance their energy intake and expenditure?) with some awareness of scope (e.g. can this be solved in 4 weeks of class time?)

Stakeholder input

Asking the range of people affected by a problem to describe their needs.

Students recognise the importance of diverse perspectives when defining the problem (e.g. what types of exercise count?) and devise survey or interview questions to elicit stakeholder needs (e.g. allowing open-ended responses to the exercise they do).

Constraints

Constraints describe the restricting factors we face when solving problems, and how we factor these into our planned solutions.

F-2

The content descriptions do not explicitly address Constraints in band F-2.

3-4

The content descriptions do not explicitly address Constraints in band 3-4.

5-6

Requirements and constraints

What a solution is required to do to solve the problem, and the constraints on that solution.

Students describe what a solution needs to do to solve a problem (e.g. inform people about the steps they need to take to prepare for a bushfire) and the data available to solve it (e.g. the fire danger rating).

7-8

Requirements and constraints

What a solution is required to do to solve the problem, and the constraints on that solution.

Students describe what a solution needs to do to solve a problem and the contraints on that solution: economic (e.g. can they afford a smartphone?), environmental (e.g. does the season influence the exercises to include?), social (e.g. is it reasonable to share exercise data with others?), technical (e.g. do we have the skills to build an app?), and usability (e.g. is it convenient to record all of your exercise?)

9-10

Requirements and constraints

What a solution is required to do to solve the problem, and the constraints on that solution.

Students describe what a solution needs to do to solve a problem and the contraints on that solution (e.g. in a product pitch). Non-functional requirements include: economic (e.g. is there a market for the product?), environmental (e.g. is the solution energy efficient and sustainable?), social (e.g. what are the legal and ethical considerations?), technical (e.g. can this be built with existing web frameworks?), and usability (e.g. how will this work for people with a vision impairment)

Decomposition

Decomposition is the process of breaking a problem into more manageable pieces so it can be understood and solved.

F-2

The content descriptions do not explicitly address Decomposition in band F-2.

3-4

The content descriptions do not explicitly address Decomposition in band 3-4.

5-6

The content descriptions do not explicitly address Decomposition in band 5-6.

7-8

Decompose problems

Breaking a problem down into simpler parts until they can be solved.

Students explore questions (e.g. what causes obesity?) and sub-questions (e.g. why are people exercising less?) to understand the problem and reveal potential solutions (e.g. how do we encourage people to exercise more?)

9-10

Decompose problems

Breaking a problem down into simpler parts until they can be solved.

Students ask questions that help them define the problem more precisely (e.g. how do we measure energy intake? How much energy does each exercise expend?)