Information Technology in a Global Society

ITGS textbook cover Information Technology in a Global Society for the IB Diploma is the first textbook designed specifically for the IB ITGS course. Unlike the general computer science textbooks currently used by many ITGS teachers, this book is written specifically with the IB ITGS course requirements in mind, and covers all components of the new ITGS syllabus (first exams May 2012), including the Higher Level (HL) topics. It is fully illustrated with over 300 photographs, diagrams, and charts.

The book is available from Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, and a variety of book shops.

This site supports the book with additional lesson plans, exercises, links to useful software, and other ITGS teaching resources. You can also view a detailed table of contents and download a free sample chapter.


Latest updates

ITGS Past papers

List of ITGS Past Paper Topics

This section of the site contains a list of all ITGS past papers from 2006 to present (both Higher Level and Standard Level) plus the IB specimen papers, broken down by paper and question. The general topic of each question is given, allowing teachers to easily select exams to use with their students and helping students select appropriate papers to revise.

Although the ITGS syllabus changed for 2012, old exam papers can still be used with some modification:

Pre-2012 paper 2 exams are very similar to the current paper 1, with the exception that the final essay question is worth 10 marks instead of the current 8 marks.

Pre-2012 paper 1 exams contain shorter answer questions (generally Assessment Objectives 1 and 2) that are similar to the current paper 1. To use this as current paper 1 exams requires the addition of an 8 mark essay question at the end.

Download the ITGS past exam papers list (.xls).


Updated: 2016-05-02
ITGS Podcasts

ITGS Podcasts

Podcasts can be a great way for ITGS students to stay up to date with the latest technology news and issues. While many podcasts simply cover the latest releases and device udpates, several feature more in-depth analysis, discussion, and social-ethical impacts which directly relate to the ITGS syllabus.

  • NPR The NPR technology podcast focuses on in-depth discussion of technology issues, which is very useful for ITGS. The very useful archive has a back-catalog of all podcasts.
  • Spark is perfect for ITGS, focusing on the impact of technology on society and culture. Each episode is around an hour, but is also broken down into shorter, snappy extra stories of around ten minutes each.
  • BBC Click Podcast contain shorter, ITGS relevant stories in every episode. Sometimes a series of episodes will cover one topic from different angles (for example, recently three episodes all addressed drones) - other times each episode will cover a different issue. As with all BBC content, the material is very clear and easy for students to understand. The drawback is that episodes are only available for a short time.
  • Security Now! A more specialised podcast, which tends to be quite long but covers a wide range of security related issues from exploits to social engineering. The great thing about this podcast is that it is always very up-to-date.

Updated: 2016-04-05

Further Reading

Below are the main sites I use with my students for ITGS news articles. As ITGS encourages students to have a global perspective on events, pursuing local newspapers (both online and offline) is a very worthwhile exercise as they often contain news articles reporting how technology can affect the local community. These can be a great opportunity for students to apply their own experience.

Students can also import this RSS feed of ITGS related news sites.
Updated: 2016-04-05
Bicycle rental schemes

Bicycle Rental Schemes

Public bicycle rental schemes - where registered members of the public are free to borrow a series of bikes spread a city or town - are available in a number of cities worldwide. These schemes make good case studies for ITGS because they integrate all three strands of the ITGS triangle, including 2.1 Business and Employment (Transport), 3.1 Hardware, and 3.3 Networks. Registration and payment also raises concerns about 1.2 Security and 1.3 Privacy and Anonymity. An ITGS past paper (May 2009) even featured a question which focused on these schemes. Examples of bike rental schemes for study include:

Bike Sharing Map also has a list of similar schemes all over the world.
Updated: 2016-02-27
ITGS project screencast

Project Screencast

The aim of the ITGS project screencast is to enable students to highlight the complex skills they have used during the project, to show how they have met their clients requirements, and to demonstrate any features of their products which may not be obvious from criteria E (for example, interactive features such as rollovers or drop-down menus on web pages).

The screencast is also used by the examiner in the event that the student's work cannot be opened (for example, if the student creates a database but the examiner does not have Microsoft Access on their computer).

Recommended screencasting software:

I have posted more advice for creating the screencast (including a link to an example) on the ITGS News blog.

You can find screencast examples for website, database, programming, and video projects in this blog post.


Updated: 2016-02-27
Olympics technology

Sports technology: IT and the Olympics

The 2012 Olympics were a great opportunity to bring contemporary events into the ITGS classroom. Olympians use information technology more than ever before, for training, performance analysis, and for enforcing rules during the events themselves.

Technology and the 2016 Rio Olympics discusses how the preparations for the 2016 Games are progressing.

Olympic broadcast technology explains how technology is changing the broadcasting of the Olympics.


Updated: 2016-02-27
Power consumption

Electrical consumption of IT devices

Google, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft, and other cloud providers use vast data centres to maintain the wealth of user data their systems store. As more and more computing services are moved to the cloud, concern is increasing over the hidden environmental costs of these energy-hungry centres. The news articles below discuss the energy requirements of data centres and the steps technology companies are taking.
Updated: 2016-02-27
You can view previous updates to the website here.