According to a report published today by the Parliamentary group “The Science and Technology Committee” there is still a huge number of UK residents without computer skills and this digital skills gap is costing the UK economy £63 billion a year in lost GDP.
12.6 million adults in the UK lack basic digital skills; 5.8 million people have never used the internet; only 35% of computer teachers in schools have a relevant degree and 30% of the required number of computer science teachers have not been recruited; and 13% of computer graduates are still unemployed 6 months after leaving university.
Science and Technology Committee Chair, Nicola Blackwood MP said:
“The UK leads Europe on tech, but we need to take concerted action to avoid falling behind. We need to make sure tomorrow’s workforce is leaving school or university with the digital skills that employers need”
The report also calls on the government to put “digital skills at the heart of modern apprenticeships”
Where to Learn?
If you feel that your own skills are somewhat lacking or that you are falling behind the times where should you go? Most local authorities publish computer courses and there are numerous types of online tuition available. The BBC for example has a whole section on its website devoted to upgrading the computer literacy of the nation. The National Careers Service too has lists of relevant courses.