Fall in applicants to be IT teachers

The number of students applying for postgraduate IT teacher training courses has fallen, boding ill for the skills shortage

The skills shortage could take a turn for the worse if an early-year drop in the number of students applying for postgraduate IT teacher training courses continues.

The latest figures show students applying to do a Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) in IT in England are down 16.3 percent on the same time last year. The statistics have been published by the graduate teacher training registry (GTTR), which processes applications throughout spring and summer.

A total of 199 men and 98 women have so far applied to train to teach IT in England on courses that will start this autumn. This compares to 218 men and 137 women who had signed up to inspire tomorrow's techies by this time last year.

IT is by no means the only subject getting less love — the total number of students applying for PGCE courses in England has so far fallen by 8.8 percent, and applicants to the majority of subjects are down.

However, IT is one of the subjects showing the biggest decline in interest. Only physics, business studies, biology and chemistry show bigger drop-offs in teacher training applications so far this year.

Traditionally, applications to PGCE courses can surge towards the end of students' degree courses in response to recruitment initiatives, according to the GTTR.


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