Posted on September 8, 2016 by staff

Number of girls taking Computing GCSE more than doubles

Number of girls taking Computing GCSE more than doubles

Girl studying for exam (file pic)
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Girl studying for exam (file pic)

The number of girls taking Computing at GCSE level has more than doubled.

Only 5,700 took the subject in 2015 compared with 12,500 in 2016.

The number of overall students taking the subject has risen by 76 per cent, with 35,000 taking the exam in 2015 and 62,000 this year.

While the Computing GCSE rose in popularity, the ICT GCSE – which is more focused on day to day technology – has become less popular, with the number of students sitting the exam dropping by 25 per cent.

The trend was also witnessed in last month’s A-level results, which showed an increase in Computing but a drop in ICT.

The rise in popularity of Stem (Science, Technology, English and Maths) subjects among girls is a positive move to bridge the skills gap the UK technology sector is currently facing.

A report by The Science and Technology Committee published in June 2016 showed that the digital skills gap costs the UK economy £63bn a year and companies are struggling to recruit digital specialists.

Neil Carberry, Director for people and skills policy at the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), considered the rise in students studying separate sciences and computing to be “warmly welcomed by business across the country”.

He said:  “To stand toe to toe with our international competitors, we need to make sure these young people have engaging and stretching options to continue their studies in these fields.”