As the start of the new university term approaches, the Institute of Coding (IoC), a government-funded national consortium of educators, employers and outreach groups, has signed up more than 22,000 learners to its innovative digital skills courses. This figure represents a significant rise since January 2019, when the IoC announced its first 5,000 enrolments – an increase of 360 per cent.
Since its formal launch at the House of Lords in June 2018, the IoC has responded to the UK’s digital skills gap and several primary challenges identified by government and employers. These include the need for more people in the digital talent pipeline, issues with alignment between taught skills and industry requirements and poor diversity in digital education. To address these challenges, the IoC has been working with its partners from industry and education to co-develop new courses in innovative formats that encourage wider participation, like short courses, tasters and online learning.
To date, the IoC has launched more than 40 new short and long digital skills courses at the undergraduate and master’s levels, as well as a series of more than 50 introductory and taster courses that are designed for the pre-university pipeline. This autumn, the IoC’s 35 education partners will launch an additional 30 long and short courses.
The courses developed by the IoC provide digital skills in areas of high demand, such as coding, artificial intelligence, cyber security and data science. From these courses, people can also pursue specific training for the automotive, healthcare, fintech and creative sectors.
Chris Skidmore, Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation, said:
“Building a workforce fit for the future is a top priority for the Government and the Institute of Coding will play a central role in providing the digital skills our country needs.
“It’s fantastic to see tens of thousands of people signed up to courses, who will join a pipeline of tech talent with exciting career opportunities, as well as supporting our businesses and economic growth.”
Rachid Hourizi, Director of the Institute of Coding comments:
“The Institute of Coding is increasing access to high-quality digital skills education, which is designed, in partnership with industry, to be inclusive and flexible. It is great to see the progress we are making, introducing innovative courses and attracting a high number of learners. We are working with new learners to help them to develop the core skills that employers are looking for and enabling people already in work to gain the high-level digital skills that they need.”