Number of students sitting ICT GCSE exams soars

Training development

There has been a marked rise in the number of students sitting the GCSE ICT exam this year, as the Government prepares to roll out its revamped IT curriculum next month.

According to figures published by the Joint Council for Qualifications earlier today, 53,197 students took GCSE ICT in 2012, which is 6,069 more than last year.

The figures also revealed that 29,607 male and 23,590 female students sat exams in GCSE ICT in 2012.

The way ICT is taught in schools has repeatedly come under fire in recent years for being dull and irrelevant.

Earlier this year, the Government responded by announcing a reform of the GCSE ICT curriculum to ensure its content is more closely tailored to industry needs and encourage more students to take up the subject.

While the number of students studying ICT went up, the percentage of students that attained top grades in the subject was slightly down on 2011.

This year, just over seven per cent of students achieved a top A* grade, while 9.3 per cent got the same grade in 2011.

Between 2011 and 2012, the number of students that scored a non-starred A grade fell from 32.1 per cent to 28.7 per cent.

ICT is not the only subject that has seen a dip in the number of students achieving top marks, as the 2012 GCSE results also revealed sharp declines in the number of students bagging good grades in English, maths and science.

Caroline Donnelly is the news and analysis editor of IT Pro and its sister site Cloud Pro, and covers general news, as well as the storage, security, public sector, cloud and Microsoft beats. Caroline has been a member of the IT Pro/Cloud Pro team since March 2012, and has previously worked as a reporter at several B2B publications, including UK channel magazine CRN, and as features writer for local weekly newspaper, The Slough and Windsor Observer. She studied Medical Biochemistry at the University of Leicester and completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Magazine Journalism at PMA Training in 2006.