31 August 2012: The Australian Computer Society (ACS) today announced a joint commitment with the Australian Council of Deans of Information and Communications Technology (ACDICT), a peak academic body for ICT higher education, to encourage engagement between ICT professionals, industry leaders and educators towards shaping more engaging ICT education opportunities and programs for a next generation of ICT leaders.
The ACS, the nation’s peak body for ICT professionals, has long been focused on making ICT skills and education a national priority. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with ACDICT sets forth terms for an ongoing cooperative and collaborative partnership based on a joint interest to identify Australia’s workforce development needs and to deliver benefits to ICT higher education.
ACS CEO Alan Patterson is passionate about investing in ICT tertiary education to overcome a recent decline in ICT university enrolments and a parallel downturn in young people pursuing an ICT career.
“Student engagement in education is critical to attract young people to the industry. We have a responsibility to ensure Australia has the skills that are in shortage yet critical to underpin the future prosperity of our nation,” said Mr Patterson.
ACDICT President Professor Leon Sterling said, “We need to urgently address knowledge and skills deficits in information and communication technology. There are more jobs in ICT that are important for innovation than there are skilled professionals to fill them. What we have seen, over decades, has been a gradual deterioration in the attention that our education system pays to ICT skills”.
“Computing concepts and ICT subjects deserve serious attention, along with mathematics and science. Getting the national curriculum right is a vital first step towards securing the Australia’s future economic prosperity.”
ACDICT will now have input into reviews and updates made to the ACS ICT Core Body of Knowledge which outlines knowledge requirements for all ICT Professionals. In turn, this collaboration will ensure that valuable input from professionals and industry partners can inform curriculum development in Australia’s tertiary institutions.
ACS President Nick Tate said, “Engaging curriculums can help inspire students, changing the negative community perceptions that exist around ICT. Today’s students are aware of the ubiquity of technology and how it affects their lives, but less able to view ICT as a rewarding profession and a channel for creativity. We believe that much more can be done to develop the relationships between educators and industry to reinvigorate student interest in ICT higher education.”
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About the ACS
The Australian Computer Society (ACS) is the professional association for Australia’s Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector. Over 20,000 ACS members work in business, education, government and the community. The Society exists to create the environment and provide the opportunities for members and partners to succeed. The ACS strives for ICT to be recognised as a driver of innovation in our society, relevant across all sectors, and to promote the formulation of effective policies on ICT and related matters
The Australian Council of Deans of ICT represents all Australian universities involved in all the ICT Professions. ACDICT’s mission is to promote and advance ICT education, research and scholarship on behalf of Australian universities and thereby provide the skilled ICT workers needed by Australian industry. www.acdict.edu.au
Contact: Professor Leon Sterling, firstname.lastname@example.org