We help students learn about technology and how to stay safe online. At school, your child will use technology and work with classmates to solve problems. They will build digital skills across different subjects.

A-Z of technology terms

Being online and using digital tools comes with specific words and meanings. It might feel like your child is speaking a different language when talking about computers, the internet and what they are learning about online.

Below are commonly used words. Feel free to save or print this list and add to it as your vocabulary grows.

Adobe Acrobat ReaderAdobe Acrobat Reader is software that allows you to view a PDF document. It can be downloaded from the Adobe website for free.
AntivirusSecurity software that protects computers from online viruses.
Applications or appsPrograms that are downloaded onto smartphones or tablet computers.
Assistive technologyTechnology that supports or improves an individual’s independence. For example, a screen reader.
AttachmentA file that has been sent with an email.
BluetoothBluetooth is a wireless communications technology that allows short-range connections between two or more devices such as mobile phones, tablets, headsets or medical equipment.
BookmarkBookmarking a website allows you to easily save it so that you can easily access.
BrowserA program on your computer or device used for viewing web pages. Edge, Internet Explorer, Safari, Chrome, and Firefox are examples of browsers.
Cloud computingCloud computing refers to saving and accessing data and programs over the Internet instead of a hard drive. Examples of Cloud services include iCloud, Google Cloud and Dropbox.
CookieData created by a web server and stored on a user’s computer. It is used to keep track of the user’s usage patterns and preferences.
CursorThe arrow or flashing line on the screen that moves when you move your mouse or type.
Cyber securityCyber security refers to measures that protect your computer, device or network from cybercrime. This involves preventing unauthorised access, change and damage.
Desktop computerA computer that is not intended to be a portable device. 
Digital footprintThe total set of traceable data left behind by a person using digital tools. A digital footprint includes active data (like emails) and passive data (like browser history).
Digital servicesAny product or service that is delivered digitally such as on a smart phone, laptop or game console.
Digital toolsDigital hardware, software, platforms and resources used to develop and communicate ideas and information.
DownloadThe process of saving a file on the internet to your computer.
EmailEmail is a way of sending messages over the internet. Popular email programs include Outlook, Gmail and Yahoo Mail.
FileA piece of information that is stored on your computer or in the cloud. For example, a photograph, word document or video.
FirewallSoftware or hardware that protects a computer from hackers and viruses.
GIFGraphics Interchange Format (GIF) is a graphics file format used for images, short videos, photos etc.
HistoryA record of all the places you have visited on the internet.
Home pageThe page that an Internet browser opens first.
HyperlinkA website address that opens when a specific piece of text or an image is selected. Text with a hyperlink is usually written in a different colour and underlined
IconAn icon is a small image that when represents an app, file or piece of software that it will open
InstallTo put software or an application on your device
InternetThe Internet is a global communication network. It allows computers and devices with an Internet connection to connect with one another and to send and receive information.
LaptopA small computer made up of a screen and a keyboard. Laptops fold in half and are easy to carry.
Memory stick or USBA small portable device that is plugged into your computer to save information and take it elsewhere.
ModemA piece of equipment that allows computers to connect to the internet.
Multi factor authenticationA security system that asks for 2 or more ways to identify a person before they can access an account. For example, this could be a password entered online and a secret code sent to a registered phone number. It is used for additional privacy and security.
Online safetyIndividuals protecting themselves and others from online harm and risks.
PasswordA secret word or phrase that gives access to an account.
Portable Document Format (PDF)Is a type of document that can be viewed with PDF reading software but often cannot be edited or changed.
PhishingUnauthorised emails and web pages that lure you into providing account numbers, pin numbers and personal information.
Plug inAdditional functionality that is downloaded and that adds to a program.
PopupAn extra window or screen that opens when on a website.
ProgramA program that tells a computer or device how to carry out particular tasks.
Read onlyRead only files cannot be edited, modified or deleted.
Recycle binFiles on your computer go to the recycle bin when deleted. Items in the recycle bin are not deleted forever. If you made a mistake, they can be recovered.
Refresh or reloadRefreshing or reloading a webpage helps the computer connect to the website and updates any changes.
Search engineA website used to find information or webpages on the internet. For example, Google.
Social networks or social mediaWebsites and applications that connect with people and share information such as text, image and video. Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter/X are examples of social media.
SoftwareSomething that you download on your computer to perform a specific task or function.
SpamUnwanted email from unknown, untrusted sources.
TabletA flat thin mobile computer with a touchscreen and rechargeable battery.
Touchpad or trackpadA small rectangle surface on a laptop that is sensitive to touch. Touching the pad and moving your finger moves the cursor in the same way that using a mouse would.
UploadTo transfer something from your computer or device on to the internet.
ViralIf an online video, photo or article “goes viral”, it experiences a sudden spike in popularity in a short period of time.
VirusA virus is a piece of code inserted into a program to cause damage. Viruses can be sent in many forms but are often transmitted via email messages.
Web pageA document on the internet.
WebsiteA page or collection of pages on the internet.
Web link, domain name, web address or URLA web page’s unique address that allows you to find the correct web page on the internet.
Wi-FiA wireless form of internet connection.
WirelessDigital systems that can transmit data to other systems without using cables. For example, data can be transmitted via microwave signals, radio frequencies and Bluetooth and infrared devices.

Microsoft Office 365

Tasmanian Government school students have free access to Microsoft Office 365 with their student email. Each of the Microsoft 365 programs has a different purpose and your child will use some more than others at school.

The commonly used programs are:  

Microsoft Word

Microsoft Word is a word processing program. With Microsoft Word you can:

  • Create documents starting with a blank page or using a template.
  • Types of documents include reports, flyers, letters, resumes and essays.
  • Add text, images, art and videos.
  • Track and review changes.

Microsoft Excel

Microsoft Excel makes it easy to organise numbers and record data. With Microsoft Excel you can:

  • Create spreadsheets.
  • Enter and sort data.
  • Perform a variety of calculations, manipulations, visualisations and analysis of data.
  • Make graphs and spot trends.

Microsoft PowerPoint

With Microsoft PowerPoint you can:

  • Create presentations from a blank document or with a template.  
  • Add audio, videos, and animation effects to your presentation.
  • Present live with presenter notes or save and share later.  

Microsoft Outlook

With Microsoft Outlook you can:

  • Organise your email account to focus on the messages that matter most.
  • Manage your Outlook calendar to schedule meetings and appointments.
  • Share files from the Outlook cloud so everyone always has the latest version.
  • Stay connected and productive wherever you are.

Microsoft Teams

With Microsoft Teams you can:

  • Collaborate and communicate with a group, team or class.
  • Create a team space, group or class.
  • Use chat to share ideas quickly.
  • Use video calls to contact, record, present, host and save video presentations.
  • Share and edit files at the same time as other people.
  • Like, @mention and reply to others in the team.
  • Customise the team by adding notes, web sites and apps.

For more help using different Microsoft 365 programs visit Microsoft 365 Quick Starts – Microsoft Support

How does my child log in to Microsoft 365?

In order to log into their Microsoft Office 365 or Microsoft email account your child will need to use their existing Education username and password.

  • Username: Firstname.Lastname@education.tas.gov.au.

Quick tip: Account details

Your child’s education username and password are generated when your child starts their formal schooling.

If you are unsure what your child’s education username or password is, please contact your school.

Other tools and applications

Minecraft Education Edition

All students attending Tasmanian Government schools have access to Minecraft: Education Edition (Minecraft: EE).

Minecraft: EE is a game-based learning platform that encourages students to think for themselves and collaborate with peers to solve problems. Minecraft EE can be used in classrooms to encourage critical thinking and creativity. Classroom teachers can set group projects, tasks and team challenges for students to work through together.

You can find out more about Minecraft EE and ways to play at home on their website:

Minecraft Education for Parents

Google Earth Education

Google Earth’s education mapping tools can be used in the classroom to help children explore global diversity, visualise abstract concepts, and connect what they experience in their daily lives to the broader community, country and world. You can explore Google Earth Education for yourself here: Google Earth Education.