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UK schools' ICT curriculum criticised, more games teaching demanded

CIHE calls current technology teaching a "box-ticking exercise"

Non-governmental lobby group the Council for Industry and Higher Education (CIHE) has called for games to play a greater part in schools' IT teaching.

Calling present ICT teaching plans "inadequate", a new CIHE report entitled The Fuse felt that it was stifling the UK's digital industries.

"The current curriculum concentrates on word processing and office productivity tools," said the CIHE, "but fails to educate students about the vital computing principles which underpin games and internet services.

"By supporting the integration of creative and digital elements in the curriculum, schools can provide a more effective pipeline of talent to Higher Education and employment."

The report's editor, Dr David Docherty claimed the U's technology industry was in danger of standing in the shadow of China, America, Japan and Australia.

"Clearly children are interested in computer games," he told ThisIsLondon, "and we want them to be taught the computing principles and hard maths and science that are behind the games.

"At the moment ICT is just a box-ticking exercise."

Said a Department of Education spokesperson, "The Government has been clear that slimming down the national curriculum and making it more challenging and rigorous is a key priority.

"This includes giving teachers more freedom to adapt their teaching to make subjects more engaging for their students."

CIHE praised the work of the likes of TIGA and the University of Abertay in seeking to improve the UK's digital education.

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Alec Meer

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A 10-year veteran of scribbling about video games, Alec primarily writes for Rock, Paper, Shotgun, but given any opportunity he will escape his keyboard and mouse ghetto to write about any and all formats.

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