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Digital Learning, Teaching and Skills

Posted 16/12/2015

In its major report into digital participation in Scotland the RSE recommended that the Scottish Government must take a national lead in ensuring that Scotland’s young people, adults, businesses and organisations have the information and digital skills required for a thriving 21st Century digital society through formal education, workplace learning and lifelong and community learning. The RSE was therefore pleased to have the opportunity to respond to the Scottish Government’s plans for a Digital Learning and Teaching Strategy.

The RSE response to the Scottish Government inquiry emphasises:

-        The need for an implementation plan to detail the level of support that will be put in place, the specific targets sought, the allocation of responsibilities, and how progress will be monitored and evaluated.

-        Scotland’s education system must be designed to equip everyone with digital literacy skills and a mind-set that is flexible, creative and adaptive. In responding to an unpredictable future, individuals must have the ability and confidence to continue to learn and adapt long after leaving formal education.

-        Just as science education was recognised as an issue of strategic importance in the early 20th Century, so computational thinking and computing science must be embedded in the core curriculum of the 21st-Century digital society.

-        The RSE’s digital inquiry and its computing science project have highlighted widespread frustration with restrictions placed on schools’ network infrastructure. We therefore welcome the proposed priority for action identified in the strategy document to develop standards and guidance to support learner access to digital technology in schools.

The RSE also responded to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee's call for evidence on the Digital Skills Gap.  The response highlighted the importance of teaching skills for future jobs, the under-representation of women and older people in  the fields of computing sceince and ICT and how a digital skills gap could impact on the Scottish and UK economies.

The full RSE response to the Scottish Government on Development of a Teaching and Learning Strategy for Scotland is available from here.

The full RSE response to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee on the Digital Skills Gap is available from here.

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