With this statistic in mind, robotics must feature in the College program to provide opportunities for students to develop key skills in critical thinking and problem solving, which will enable them to create robotics solutions for this developing market.
How does the College enable students to build these key skills?
One example is in our year 10 program, where students work together to solve a complex warehousing problem to mirror the shift in the distribution industry to the robotics sector. Students code a solution using the Python coding language to transport stock depending on the order placed. In a 2019 Forbes article Koksal states, “The video game industry is growing so fast that some believe it will reach over $300 billion by 2025” (Koksal, 2019). Considering this, in year 10 and 11 Digital Technology, students undertake a game development programming unit to further their skills in this developing market. Students work to a client brief, designing, testing and fully programming their own game deploying the game to an executable or an online platform.
Units like this, enable students to develop a foundation of skills in coding principles and advance their ability to code functionally and collaboratively. Once they leave the college and if they do decide to take up a technology related qualification, my hope is units like this will give them an advantage over their peers interested in similar courses.
Soft skills are vital
The breadth of skills required for a technology related careers are vast, but none more so that the ability to re-learn or independently learn new skills. The Digital Technology curriculum, which contains units that will give our boys experience in HTML, Python, CSS, SQL, C++, JSON, XML and AJAX also gives them the opportunity to collaborate on projects and work on those soft skills of collaboration, teamwork, leadership, and communication that will stay with them forever.
Ashok Myshore writes in a 2019 technology article that, ‘These are basic foundations that will stand a person in good stead even when the technology changes so rapidly.’ (Ashok Mysore, 2019) ATC students are exposed to computational and algorithmic thinking from year 4, through hardware like our ozobots and Lego Mindstorm EV3’s. Early use of these technologies while fun, also build those necessary key problem solving skills. According to an article by ACS, Australia will require an extra 100,000 tech workers by 2024 and by undertaking units that more closely mirror industry projects, ATC is doing its part to prepare our boys for the requirements of tertiary education in technology fields.
Head of Digital Technology