!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Strict//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-strict.dtd"> Streamline Training & Documentation: Some Online Educational Resources Provided by Intel

Monday, January 21, 2008

Some Online Educational Resources Provided by Intel

In the course of working on a role play in which I had to provide basic information on fabrication of microchips, I came upon a helpful primer that Intel provides in a section of its website devoted to educational resources.

Some other items of interest at this site — all directed at helping people strengthen their thinking ability — include:

Visual Ranking Tool — "...brings focus to the thinking behind making ordered lists. Students identify and refine criteria as they assign order or ranking to a list. They must explain their reasoning and can compare their work with each other in a visual diagram. This tool supports activities where students need to debate differences, reach consensus, and organize ideas."

Seeing Reason Tool — "... promotes cause-and-effect thinking through visual mapping. Students create visual representations of the factors and relationships in a cause-and-effect investigation. These maps make thinking visible and promote collaboration as students work together to refine their understanding."

Showing Evidence Tool — "... helps students learn how to construct well-reasoned arguments and prove their case with credible evidence. Showing Evidence gives students a visual framework for constructing an argument or hypothesis that is supported by evidence. Using the interactive features of Showing Evidence, students make a claim, identify evidence, evaluate the quality of that evidence, explain how the evidence either supports or weakens their claim, and then make a conclusion based on the evidence. This thinking tool supports activities where students need to debate differences, reach conclusions, and organize ideas."

If you are interested in a basic curriculum covering computers and related topics, you can have a look at Intel's online course called The Journey Inside. The course has six sections:
  • Introduction to Computers — "... provides short history of the computer, introduces the four major components of a computer, and compares computer 'brains' with the human brain."

  • Circuits and Switches — "... teaches students about electricity, electric circuits, and the difference between mechanical and non-mechanical (transistors) switches."

  • Digital Information — "... explores the differences between the decimal and binary number systems and how the information is represented and processed using binary code."

  • Microprocessors — "... investigates how microprocessors process information, demonstrates the size and the complexity of their circuitry, and explains how they are manufactured."

  • The Internet — "... defines the Internet, then goes on to explain the World Wide Web, hypertext, URLs, packets, bandwidth, connection choices, search engines, and the need to critically evaluate the quality of the information found on the Web."

  • Technology and Society — "... discusses the impact technological advances have on people's lives, with examples from the past and current day. Numerous side stories provide insights on ways the digital age is already affecting our lives. The final section talks about the accelerating rate of change and what we might expect to see in the near future."
The attraction of these materials, which are generally pitched to students through grade 12, is that, in fact, they can be quite illuminating for adults wishing to get better at critical thinking and/or to beef up their understanding of how computers work and are used.