Category Archives: Curriculum

UKForCE Blog posts relating to the computing curriculum

Qualifications which schools and colleges might consider as replacements for the ICT GCSE and A level

Since the news broke that the Department for Education would not be re-developing the ICT/IT GCSE or A level back in November 2015, there has been concern that there would be a gap in qualifications landscape which the Computing/Computing Science GCSE could not fill.

UKForCE has examined the lists of qualifications which are available to schools and colleges, and which are counted in the performance measures at Key Stage 4 and later. What follows is a list of these qualifications, for schools and colleges to consider when planning their provision of computing education. It in no way constitutes an endorsement of any qualification, as UKForCE has not yet made an assessment of specific content or suitability.

We hope you find these useful, and would welcome your comments.

Qualifications for consideration following the cancellation of redevelopment of the ICT

Simon Jenkins Calls For More Digital Muggles

In a polemic piece in the Guardian today Simon Jenkings argues for a shake up of the education system, and less focus on Computing or STEM.

Some of what he says about the education system being outdated has a lot of merit. But there are three huge fallacies in his assertion that we should spend less time on teaching Computing so we can focus more on the skills that employers want – i.e. communication, team working, critical thinking and problem solving.

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This is for everyone

Can anyone learn to program? I think so, and I think it’s important that those teaching computing think so too. I’ve been at a couple of conferences in the last month where the question came up, and I was really surprised by how many in these audiences thought there’d be at least some in their classes who would just not get programming. This worries me, I think because it suggests that some teachers are approaching the new curriculum with a fixed model of pupils’ ability, as if this were presented to us as a given with which to do what we can.

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Oral Evidence to the House Of Lords Select Committee on Digital Skills

This morning, alongside Hugh Milward, Policy Director for Microsoft UK, and Mike Warriner, Engineering Director for Google UK, I gave oral evidence to Baroness Sally Morgan’s Select Committee on Digital Skills.  The session was recorded and starts approximately 1hr 9mins through the following video clip (the first hour of the clip is an earlier evidence session with three other panelists) – http://www.parliamentlive.tv/Main/Player.aspx?meetingId=15870.

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