The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) reports that an all-time high number of high school graduates are enrolling in computing programs. Clare Marchant, the chief executive of UCAS, stated that this year’s application data revealed that 18-year-olds were increasingly motivated to study computing due to the rise of digital and artificial intelligence.
Almost 10% more applications to study computing were submitted in 2023 than in 2022. However, it was the seventh most popular field of study in higher education. While nearly 95,000 students submitted applications for computer and AI-related courses, nearly twice as many submitted applications for business and management programs. More than 125,000 students enrolled for courses in design, creative, and performing arts.
Computing was less popular than subjects related to medicine, social sciences, biological and physical sciences, and engineering and technology. UCAS reported that the number of applicants for computer-related courses has increased annually since 2019. This year, software engineering applications increased by 16% compared to the previous year. Information technology attracted 11% more applicants.
The number of students applying to study computer games and animation increased by 2%, while the number applying to study artificial intelligence (AI) increased by 4%. Ms. Marchant posits that the increased interest in computing courses may be partially attributable to the expanding public dialogue surrounding technology and artificial intelligence.
She said –
“We know that changes in the world around us translate into increased demand for certain courses, as we saw for economics post-2008, and for medicine and nursing during the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Chris Derrick, the deputy principal of Kelvinside Academy in Glasgow, stated that all of the students enrolling for computing courses today are “digital natives” who have “honed and developed these skills from a young age using powerful technology every day.”
He said –
“Programming knowledge is also so accessible via YouTube and ChatGPT.”
“Pupils can explore their passions and learn at pace. If they don’t have an answer, Google and YouTube will.”
There are a growing number of employment opportunities related to AI, data science, software design, and computing technologies, although much of the recent public discourse has focused on which occupations will be replaced by AI. UCAS also reported an increase in applications from 18-year-olds from the most disadvantaged backgrounds in the United Kingdom.
If you’re fascinated by the AI trend in computing and interested in how technology can simplify your life, don’t miss our article on “10 Smart Gadgets That Will Make Your Life Easier.” Discover innovative devices that harness the power of AI to enhance everyday tasks and streamline your routines. From smart home assistants to cutting-edge health trackers, these gadgets will truly revolutionize your lifestyle.
Now coming back to our article 18% of applications for computer-related studies are submitted by female pupils, a slight increase from 17% in 2022 and 16% in 2021. The total number of 18-year-old applicants in the United Kingdom was over 319,500, the second-greatest on record and a slight decrease from the previous year.
Rashik Parmar, chief executive of the British Computer Society (BCS) said –
“Teenagers in the UK know that AI will change the world forever, it shouldn’t surprise us to see this soaring demand for computing degrees”.
Vanessa Wilson of the University Alliance, a consortium of British institutions, concurred that heightened public interest in artificial intelligence in recent months may have contributed to a rise in applicant interest.
She said –
“The rise in the popularity of computing may well be a response to increasing awareness of the role of technologies such as AI, as well as a strong desire from students to develop what they see as future-proof skills.”
The surge in students opting for computing courses reflects the growing influence of digital technology and AI in our society. As more individuals recognize the potential of these fields, it’s crucial to foster meaningful conversations and gather diverse perspectives.
We would love to hear from you in the comments section below. What are your thoughts on the rise in students choosing computing? Are you considering a career in technology or AI-related fields? Perhaps you have personal experiences or insights to share about the impact of technology on education and employment. Join the discussion and let us know your viewpoint.
Engage with other readers’ comments, ask questions, and exchange ideas. Together, we can explore the implications of this trend and its significance for the future. Your input contributes to a richer dialogue surrounding the intersection of education, technology, and career opportunities. Don’t forget to bookmark our website to stay updated on the latest trends in computing, AI, and technology education!