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ACS launches new report on computer education in Australia

Calls for a better pipeline to solve the skills shortage in Australia

30 May 2022

ACS, the professional association for Australia’s technology sector, has launched its new report on the state of Digital Technologies education in Australia: Computer education in Australian schools 2022: Enabling the next generation of IT professionals.

The report looks at the current state of computer education in schools, and builds upon data from a survey of schools across Australia covering the practical implementation of computer education in Australian primary and secondary schools. 

The report also provides a set of recommendations for schools, government and the education sector to improve outcomes for Australian students. 

“It’s no secret that Australia has a significant deficit when it comes to IT professionals,” said ACS President Dr Nick Tate. 

“Along with healthcare it’s the fastest growing sector in the Australian economy. Every year for the next five years businesses and government will be demanding more than 50,000 new IT professionals. 

“In 2019, there were less than 7000 ICT graduates from Australian universities, not nearly enough to meet the needs. We cannot continue to rely on overseas workers to make up the shortfall.” 

The Digital Technologies curriculum, introduced in 2014 and progressively rolled out across Australian states, was designed to help students pursue careers in technology. 

But as the survey results show, the implementation of the curriculum varies wildly from school to school and state to state. Some of the elements the report notes the need to address include: 

  • Teacher training, with many teachers having to teach a subject that they did not learn in school. School systems need to support their upskilling. 
  • A lack of understanding about the distinction between Digital Literacy (using computers) and Digital Technologies (creating with digital tools). 
  • Poor reporting on Digital Technologies outcomes to parents. 
  • Equitable access to both teaching talent and equipment across all areas of Australia. 

“Addressing the shortage of IT workers in Australia means addressing IT education in Australia,” noted Dr Tate. “There’s a lot that can and needs to be done to get us to a place where we can really say we’re the clever country.” 

The full report can be downloaded from the ACS website

-ENDS-

Further information

Troy Steer

Director of Corporate Affairs and Public Policy

M – 0417 173 740

E – [email protected]

About ACS

ACS is the professional association for Australia's technology sector. ACS members work across business, education, government, and the community delivering the digital services essential to the nation’s prosperity and security.

ACS exists to create the environment and provide the opportunities for members and partners to succeed. ACS strives for technology professionals to be recognised as drivers of innovation in our society, relevant across all sectors, and to promote the formulation of effective policies on technology and related matters. Visit www.acs.org.au for more information.