Visually appealing icons can make a presentation, website, or programming project really stand out from the crowd. Well designed icons also aid user navigation in software. The sites below contain copyright free icons for use in projects. Some feature Creative Commons licences; others feature similar free usage licences.
IB pupils must remember that all work submitted to the IB must correctly cite any sources or materials used, even if the source’s licence does not require it. Failure to do this gives the impression the student is passing the work as their own. This opens them to accusations of plagiarism, and the consequences of this are severe.
For ITGS internal assessment projects, it is also worth considering if it would be more appropriate for a student to take and process their own icons and images instead of using copyright free icons. This could potentially also contribute to their complex skills.
IconFinder has both premium and free icons. The free icon section includes icons with a variety of licenses including Creative Commons. Icons are grouped into categories to make it easy to find icons with a consistent look and feel. A wide range of styles is present, from two colour ‘flat’ icons to 3D embossed colour icons – and everything between. Icons are available as large (512×512) PNGs which can be scaled down to a preferred size, and as SVG files which can be scaled to any size using a program such as Inkscape.
FlatIcon features over 1,000,000 icons divided into over 20,000 collections, so you should be able to find something you like. Each collection is based on a theme such as “Social Networks” and “Business”. This makes it easy to find related icons that have a similar style, which can make your user interface look much better. The FlatIcon basic licence requires you to credit the author – for software, this can be done in the “About” or “Credits” dialog of your application. Icons are available in a range of formats, including PNG, SVG, EPS, and PSD.
SoftIcons has thousands of free icons for software development, such as save icons, print icons, and so on. Its icons are all free, and some allow commercial use too. They can be downloaded as ICO or PNG files in a variety of sizes. There are some excellent 3D style icons on this site and some rather unique ones too. Some personal favourites are the wooden social media icons.
Compared to other icon sites, Dry Icons hosts “only” 6700 icons. However, they are all extremely high quality and they cover a very wide range of topics, including science icons and Christmas icons. Icons can be downloaded as SVG files so they can be scaled to any size in an appropriate editor such as Inkscape. Most icons allow commercial use and all require attribution.