LOS ANGELES, CA (August 10, 1999) – Futurekids, Inc., a world leader helping schools use technology to transform education, today announced the availability of new Teacher and Student Technology Competency Exams. These exams, developed and tested by Boise State University in Idaho, provide valid and reliable assessment of technology skills in ten basic areas including word processing, spreadsheets, databases, operating environments, multimedia, desktop publishing, and telecommunications (the Internet). Upon completion, schools receive quantifiable results about the effectiveness of their technology investments. To date, these exams have been administered to over 8,000 participants in Idaho. Futurekids is now partnering with the university to help broaden access to the exams worldwide. Futurekids is the only representative outside of Idaho officially certified to proctor the exams.

When administered at a school, the exams generate data about: (1) the technology literacy of teachers, and their ability to use technology in the classroom; (2) the technology literacy of students, and their ability to use technology in real-world applications; and (3) the technology infrastructure of the school. Schools then receive comparative data with other schools in the country and a consultative review of their existing technology plan.

As stated by Dr. Carolyn Thorsen, Boise State University Director of Technology Programs, “These exams provide the comprehensive results our schools need, in order to make informed decisions about their school technology goals, plans, and investments. Without such precise data, it is almost impossible to implement successful technology programs that truly meet
the needs of teachers and students.”

The questions in the Teacher and Student Technology Competency Exams are designed specifically to measure computer knowledge and skill, according to the National Educational Technology Standards (NETS) articulated by the International Society of Technology in Education (ISTE). The questions are not software or computer platform specific. Teams of technology coordinators, administrators, and master teachers test the validity and reliability of the exams, reviewing and updating individual questions every six months.

The Teacher and Student Technology Competency Exams originally developed from a statewide effort in Idaho to demonstrate the effectiveness of school technology. The Idaho Legislature has contributed over 60 million dollars toward technology in its public schools, and these exams served to ensure that teachers and students were adequately prepared to take advantage of the investment in technology.
About Futurekids
Futurekids is the premier provider of technology teacher training solutions for schools and universities around the world. Futurekids has a 22-year record of success in technology education. Their core competency is providing technology training as it relates to teaching and learning. They have relationships and achievements with many key educational partners such as Intel, IBM and Dell.  Futurekids is privately owned with headquarters in Los Angeles, CA. For more information on Futurekids, please visit http://www.futurekids.com/.


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