BCS respond to OECD report on technology in schools
BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT, says the way that computers have been used in schools until recently could account for research results published yesterday by Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. The research, which is a study into the impact of school technology on international test results, suggests that pupils’ performance is not improved by investing in computers and classroom technology.
Bill Mitchell, Director of Education at BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT, explains: “I don’t find the results surprising since computers in schools have mainly been used to show children how to use standard software packages. In England, with the introduction of the new computing curriculum, children from age 5 onwards are now learning not to just be users of technology but to be digital creators. This will have very real outcomes both for children and teachers, but also in the long term; help the UK remain a digital skills powerhouse.”
Having been instrumental in the introduction of computing to the curriculum in England, the Institute believes it’s vital that children from as young as 5 years old learn computer science. Since the introduction of the new computing curriculum in England, the Institute has supported teachers who are introducing computing into their classrooms
Bill continues: “Computers should be used as tools to explore stimulating ideas and concepts, to experiment with simulations that describe challenging real world problems. Doing this helps children become digital creators with advanced thinking skills relevant to all subjects whether that’s maths, English, history or computer science.”
This year has seen an increase in the number of students taking GCSE Computer Science; numbers have more than doubled to just over 34,000.
Bill says: “This is a tremendously encouraging sign. At the same time that’s about 28% of the number of students taking physics GCSE, which shows how far there is still to go in terms of GCSE take up. Ideally we’d like to see the number of students taking GCSE Computer Science double again next year. Our view is that will only happen where we make sure teachers are getting the right professional development to make GCSE Computer Science a success.
“Our advice to schools is make sure your teachers join the Computing At School group (CAS), which is free to all primary and secondary teachers and IT professionals. CAS (which is part of BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT) runs the DfE funded Network of Excellence in Teaching Computer Science, so through CAS it’s easy to get access to really good practice from other schools, find out what free help your local universities can offer, and most importantly talk to the other 19,000 CAS members about what’s going on in their schools.”
Related Link: OECD report
Latest News from
Tight guidelines needed to make sure new Online Safety law is a success, says professional body for IT13/05/2021 15:43:00
The government needs to be clear about what makes online material harmful, if new laws are to be effective, says BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT.
BCS celebrates 50 years of Distinguished Fellows award with call for diversity in nominations13/05/2021 09:20:00
The professional body for the IT Industry is marking the 50th anniversary of its Distinguished Fellowship award, whose previous recipients include Sophie Wilson, who helped design the BBC Micro-computer.
Queen’s Speech: Adult skills boost a step in the right direction says BCS12/05/2021 12:05:00
Government plans, outlined in yesterday's Queen's Speech, to introduce a Lifetime Skills Guarantee, is a significant step in the right direction to address the digital skills gap, says the professional body for the IT industries.
NHS app is the right choice for UK travellers to prove their COVID status, say IT professionals03/05/2021 09:20:00
Adapting the NHS app to allow UK travellers abroad to prove their COVID status is the right decision by government, IT industry experts say. The app currently used to book GP appointments and access medical records can be effectively upgraded because it is open source and supported by NHS staff, according to BCS The Chartered Institute for IT.
Social media must verify users’ ID to end online abuse - IT industry poll29/04/2021 13:05:00
Social media should require users to verify their identities, to combat anonymous racism, homophobia and other abuse targeted at minorities and vulnerable groups, according to a poll of the IT industry.
New EU AI regulations demand a ‘fully professionalised tech industry’ - Institute for IT21/04/2021 16:15:00
Tough new EU rules on using AI in high risk situations will require organisations to meet unprecedented standards of ethics and transparency, the IT industry’s professional body has warned.
Zoom star Jackie Weaver and Institute for IT call for online council meetings in England to be made legal15/04/2021 12:10:00
Britain’s best known local council figure, Jackie Weaver and the professional body for IT have together called on the Government to make online council meetings legal, post-lockdown.
Increased need for algorithms to be ethical by design in the workplace, says BCS25/03/2021 14:10:00
BCS has responded to a report by the TUC that raises concerns about the lack of legal safeguards to protect staff from unfair treatment due to the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in the workplace.