What is ICT?

Information Communications Technology (ICT) refers to the study of any technology that uses telecommunication to store, transmit or access digital information. It focuses on the way that modern technology affects our society and how we communicate.

Ok, so it might sound a little complicated, but if you enjoy browsing the Internet, happen to own a smartphone or often spend time watching digital television, you’ve already got a pretty good handle on the types of technology ICT covers. Furthermore, if you’ve ever talked to someone on Skype, or sent an email or text rather than a letter, then you’ve probably also got some idea of how modern technology has changed the way we interact with each other.

Hold on a sec...IT, Computer Science and ICT are the same thing, right?

Nope. The most important thing to remember here is that ICT isn’t all about computers. Whilst IT focuses on hardware and the way computers process data, and Computer Science focuses on theory and programing, ICT takes a broader approach and focuses on the way in which digital information is communicated. Sure, computers still play a big part, but ICT also looks at how devices like telephones or audio/visual networks can be used alongside computers. It’s basically a combination of IT and telecommunications.

Confusion happens because all three subjects overlap and share similarities (think chemistry and physics), but it’s best to remember that ICT is actually more about how we use technology - INCLUDING computers and programs - whilst IT and computer science are often about theory and how computers and programs work.

Better yet, try to think about the three subjects in terms of cars. In this scenario, ICT would be the equivalent of driving a car, whilst IT and Computer Science would be more comparable to designing and building a car. Get it?