Lesson 1: The Information Society

The Information Society

Learning Outcomes
After going through this unit you should be able to explain basic concepts related to:

The advent of the information society

  • What is ICT?
  • Devices used in ICT
  • How it manifests in our daily lives

The Role of the Computer in Transforming Information Society

  1. What is a Society?
  2. Different Economic Era
  3. Impact of the Information age on Society

Positive Impacts of Technology on Society

  • Technology has Mechanized Agriculture
  • Technology has Improved Transportation
  • Technology has Improved Communication
  • Technology has Improved Education and Learning Process
  • Improved Health delivery
  • Improved Economics
  • Virtually Improved all aspect of life

Requisite skills for the information society

  • Communications skills
  • The ability to learn independently
  • Ethics and responsibility
  • Knowledge management

What is ICT?

  • Information and Communication Technology or “ICT,” includes products that store, process, transmit, convert, duplicate, or receive electronic information.

Examples are: software applications and operating systems; web-based information and applications such as distance learning; telephones and other telecommunications products; video equipment and multimedia products that may be distributed on videotapes, CDs, DVDs, email, or the World Wide Web; office products such as photocopiers and fax machines; calculators; and computer hardware

ICT in Education

  • ICT in Education is the mode of education that use information and communications technology to support, enhance, and optimize the delivery of information.

The Information Society

  • What is a Society?
  • The community of people living in a particular country or region, associated to one another and having shared customs, laws and organizations.

Different Economic eras include:

  • Agricultural era
  • Industrial era
  • Information era
  • Knowledge era

Different Economic Era

  • Early humans were hunter-gatherers and lived in nomadic groups.
  • An agrarian society, or agricultural society, is any community whose economy is based on producing and maintaining crops and farmland

Industrial Era

  • The Industrial Revolution, was the transition to new manufacturing processes in Europe and the United States, in the period from about 1760 to sometime between 1820 and 1840.

Information Era

  • The present age is known to be the information era. Another term which refers to this phenomenon is the so-called the third industrial revolution. People begin to realize the power and the importance of information and knowledge.

Knowledge Era

  • The Knowledge Age is a new, advanced form of capitalism in which knowledge and ideas are the main source of economic growth (more important than land, labour, money, or other ‘tangible resources).

Comparison of Agrarian, Industrial and Information Era

Impact of the Information age on Society

  • Technology impacts the environment, people and the society as a whole.
  • Positive Impact
  • Negative Impact

Positive Impacts of Technology on Society

  • Technology has mechanized agriculture: Modern agricultural technology allows a small number of people to grow vast quantities of food in a short period of time with less input which results into high yields and return on investment”
  • Technology has improved transportation
  • Transportation is one of the basic areas of technological activity. Both society and businesses have benefited from the new transportation methods. Transportation provides mobility for people and goods.
  • Technology Has Improved Communication
  • Communication is used for a number of purposes. Both society and organizations depend on communication to transfer information. People use technology to communicate with each other.
  • Technology Has Improved Education and Learning Process
  • Many schools have started integrating educational technologies in their schools with a great aim of improving the way students learn. Technologies like smart whiteboards, computers, mobile phones, iPads, projectors, and internet are being used in classrooms to boost students moral to learn

Negative Impacts of Technology on Society

  • Resource Depletion
  • The more demand for new technologies and advancement of current technologies, the more pressure we put on earth’s natural resources
  • Increased Population
  • Technology has helped us live longer by improving health facilities and aiding in the research for solutions for most health problems which affect humans. This is good news for developed countries but is bad news for developing countries which have not been in a position to access these health care benefits brought by technology.

Increased Pollution

  • Pollution affects the land we grow crops on, the water we drink and the air we breathe. The increased demand for new technologies and advancement of technologies has resulted in many manufacturing and processing factories.

Requisite skills for the information society 

  • Communications skills:
  • The ability to learn independently
  • Ethics and responsibility
  • Teamwork and flexibility
  • Thinking skills
  • Knowledge management etc.

Further Reading

  • Shelly, R., Cashman, T.J., Gunter, G.A., and Gunter, R.E. (2013). Teachers Discovering
  • Computers. Integrating Technology and Digital Media in the Classroom. (7th ed). Thomson Course Technology
  • **Selected articles and online resources (YouTube.com, MOOCS: Khan Academy, TESSA [www.TESSAfrica.net], Udemy etc).


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