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ACS Week in Review: 14 June 2013

Friday, 14 Jun 2013

This week, the ACS welcomed the announcement by the government of the updated Digital Economy Strategy and applauded the rollout of the successful ‘Group X’ digital careers program. ACS CEO, Mr Alan Patterson welcomed the announcement: "As the professional body for Australia’s ICT workforce, the ACS was there at the beginning of GroupX and we now applaud the Federal Government for its support in taking it to the next level. Inspiring school children to pursue a career in ICT goes to the heart of ensuring we have the skills in the future to take full advantage of the digital age." Visit,-stoopid! for details.

The ACS commissioned University of Canberra – Education Institute to research teenagers views and use of Technology. Dr Nick Tate, President of the ACS, welcomed the research findings: "The ACS has long been calling on curriculum policy makers to focus more on technology education. The ACS commissioned this research in the national interest to address the alarming decline in interest among students in maths and sciences." A summary of the report is available at

Modern teens not so different after all
The idea that teenagers are lost to their families once they log on to computers and social media is challenged by research showing that the old-fashioned concepts of family time, homework and recreation place way ahead of the online world.
An in-depth survey of 202 Canberra teenagers aged between 12 and 18 found that when typical after-school activities are ranked, playing computer games only just scrapes in at 10th, while Facebook ranks ninth. To read more about this on ACS Media Release, visit,-chat-and-parents-early-high-school-the-critical-time-for-technology-education

The most common activities young people undertake on a regular basis (at least several times a week) are spending time with family (90%);  doing homework (82%); watching television (75%); doing jobs around the house (73%); . spending time doing a hobby (72%); playing sport (67%); seeing friends (65%); reading (62%); Facebook(61%) and playing computer games (46%).

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Gillard Government to boost digital skills
Students in years 5 to 10 across the country will be the focus of a new program to encourage more people to pursue a career in information and communications technology (ICT). The Minister for Broadband Communications and the Digital Economy announced funding of $6.5 million over four years to deliver the Digital Careers program.

Industry welcomes ICT education funding
The federal government will provide funding to National ICT Australia to develop programs that promote ICT careers to students. The ICT industry has been grappling with declining ICT student rates for some time, with ACS CEO Alan Patterson welcoming the funding. “Inspiring school children to pursue a career in ICT goes to the heart of ensuring we have the skills in the future to take full advantage of the digital age,” he said.

NICTA to assist Govt's $6.5 bn Digital Career education program
Australian ICT innovation hub NICTA is set to assist the federal government in rolling out a $6.5 billion Digital Careers education program. The program, which will take place over the next four years, will expand on the body’s Group X digital education pilot in Queensland.,nicta-hopes-x-factor-will-save-it-study.aspx

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NEC’s indigenous traineeship to bridge digital divide
Information technology isn’t always the first career choice for indigenous students but Alice Spings-born Garry Lockyer is determined to buck the trend. He was accepted into NEC’s IT indigenous training program in the Northern Territory while completing his Certificate III in IT.
ACS Policy and External Affairs Head Adam Redman said that in June last year, it recommended that it form an ICT advisory council to help the government on ICT policy matter.