ICTC Website-FIT Section
- 1 Frequently-Asked Questions
- 1.1 What is FIT?
- 1.2 What are the Areas of Concentration?
- 1.3 Where is the FIT Program Offered?
- 1.4 Which FIT Certificates are Available?
- 1.5 How can I Participate?
- 1.6 What Resources are Available?
- 1.7 Contact Us
What is FIT?
Discover how FIT is helping Canada's youth
Focus on Information Technology (FIT) is a nationally-recognized digital skills literacy program developed by the Information and Communications Technology Council and Canada's ICT employers. An innovative and comprehensive ICT skills program, FIT is offered in over 150 high schools and communities across Canada and prepares youth for successful employment opportunities in the knowledge economy.
The FIT program provides 21st century learning experiences for students to develop their technical, business and interpersonal skills. It utilizes problem-based learning (i.e., observation, personal reflection, investigation, action and feedback) and peer-to-peer interaction to help students master the FIT competencies. The program benefits from valuable career pathways and equips students to learn new skills in interactive media; software design and development; business and information analysis; network systems and operations; and business and technical skills for practical, hands-on experience to develop solutions to real-world problems.
The FIT program includes:
- Applied, project-based and interdisciplinary learning
- Collaborative learning
- Inquiry and investigation
- Technology for learning
- Demonstration of competence
- Personalized learning
- Information access, analysis, synthesis and the generation of new ideas
FIT Graduates receive the FIT Certificate for achieving excellence in mastering the industry-validated competencies. The program ensures that graduates also meet the requirements to write industry certification exams. Students may also receive dual credits, advanced standing or other articulation benefits at different universities and colleges across Canada and are eligible to participate in FIT-assisted summertime, youth apprenticeship and co-op placements.
Core funding for the FIT program has been provided by Human Resources and Skills Development Canada. National industry partners include Cisco, Google and CIPS (Canada's Association for IT Professionals). We invite you to join us.
What are the Areas of Concentration?
ICT specialties lead to better jobs, greater opportunities
The Focus on Information Technology (FIT) program comprises four (4) areas of concentration to help prepare Canadian youth to learn valuable digital ICT skills to thrive in the knowledge economy.
These concentrations are aligned to provincial education outcomes: they allow students to meet high school diploma requirements and focus their ICT skills development for writing industry exams for A+; Java and other programming languages; Adobe; Microsoft; Linux; and Network+ certifications such as Cisco IT Essentials or Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA).
The FIT areas of concentration include:
- Interactive Media includes web design and development, social and mobile media, interactive games and e-commerce. Blend business, technology and artistic skills to address emerging opportunities faced by today's organizations.
- Software Design and Development includes solution design, integration, programming and database development. Use your technical competencies to develop applications and systems to help solve real-world problems.
- Business and Information Analysis includes business and information analysis or systems architecture. Use your technical and business skills to analyze and respond to business needs and recommend cost-effective ICT solutions.
- Network Systems and Operations includes technical and communications platform maintenance critical to the smooth operations of an organization. Use your skills to implement and maintain mission-critical hardware and software.
- General Skills includes Business and Technical Skills. Business skills help students access ICT requirements and insight required to support today's organizations. Technical skills help students develop their abilities to perform effectively in the workplace.
Where is the FIT Program Offered?
ICT skills for youth across Canada
The FIT program is offered in school districts and 150 schools throughout British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador. Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Nova Scotia are onboard for 2013. ICTC is also exploring opportunities to offer the FIT program to First Nations communities.
FIT is growing and we invite new school districts and schools to join us.
Which FIT Certificates are Available?
Get recognized for 21st century digital skills
The FIT program requires two-to-three years to complete as a student completes his/her high school graduation requirements. To achieve a FIT Certificate, a student must take a set of specific courses that includes an understanding of appropriate ICT terminology and the importance of teamwork and collaboration. Called a “Pathway”, the set of courses is identified and approved by the school administration before the FIT program starts. While the specific pathway may vary by province, Communications, Technology and Business courses typically satisfy the FIT criteria.
There are five (5) FIT certificates:
- The original FIT certificate where the student has met the FIT criteria by passing the courses in the selected area of concentration.
- The above certificate with an endorsement (gold seal) showing that the student completed a “work experience” or co-op education course.
- The original certificate with an endorsement showing that the student has achieved an industry standard such as A+; Java and other programming languages
- The original certificate with both endorsements.
- A unique FIT+ certificate indicating that the student has achieved the criteria and completed the provincial requirements for co-op education and completed and passed two (2) or more industry standards.
How can I Participate?
Be part of the FIT Experience
The FIT program benefits from significant participation by its stakeholders - students, parents, teachers, school administrators and industry partners. There are many ways to get involved including:
- Teachers can help students form teams and work on projects akin to a technology-based business. This hands-on experience accelerates learning and reinforces the competencies embedded in the FIT program. Teachers can also connect and share resources and best practices with their peers to develop a motivating and exciting learning experience.
- Students can benefit from their teachers' knowledge of ICTs and the industry experience embedded in the FIT program. They can learn and practice new skills and abilities that will prepare them for 21st century jobs and organizations. They can positively interact with their peers, and bring observations, insights and experiences from their province, communities and culture.
- Parents can coach, mentor, guide and encourage their children to share their ICT knowledge at home and in the classroom. They can share examples and experiences from their workplaces and facilitate the transfer of learning by showing the connection between in-class learning, economic trends, world events and opportunities for gainful employment using 21st century ICT skills.
- School Administrators can facilitate adoption of the FIT program into their schools; support teachers in implementing the program and hosting face-to-face and virtual teacher in-service training. They are a valuable resource for communities, parents and ministries of education seeking to learn more about the opportunities for digital-skills development in the knowledge economy.
- Industry Partners can enhance their thought leadership and influence the future of education and 21st century learning by sponsoring the FIT program to support core learning activities; special initiatives; and teacher collaboration events. They can join Industry Partnership Networks to help FIT grow, engage their employees and coordinate speaking and work experience opportunities such as job shadowing, twinning and mentoring.
What Resources are Available?
Access the FIT Community
A specially-designed resource for professional development, the FIT teachers' community provides access to up-to-date ICT lesson plans and teaching resources such as presentations, assessments, videos, teaching tips and samples. Visit: http://www.focusit.ca In French / En francais: http://www.focusti.ca
FIT teachers have exclusive access to ICTC's proprietary FIT competencies. They can connect and interact with each other and learn about the latest news and developments in the FIT program. They can access valuable teaching resources in the community and from their FIT teacher peers across Canada.
The FIT Community offers new teachers the best resources to get started and increase their ease and comfort with the FIT program. Experienced teachers earn kudos and recognition from their peers for helping others, troubleshooting and sharing their FIT knowledge and experience.
Learn about digital skills literacy for youth
We are interested in hearing from you about your digital skills learning needs and priorities. If you are interested in offering the FIT program at your school or in your school district, please contact FIT's Program Manager at FIT@ictc-ctic.ca. You may also call us at (613) 237-8551 EST.