Michael Gove introduces new computing curriculum with MOOCs and 3D printers

Education secretary Michael Gove (above) has warned that curriculums must quickly adapt to new technologies which offer ways to revolutionise teaching methods.

Speaking at the BETT conference in London today, Gove said that classrooms can benefit from the introduction of cutting edge technologies such as massive open online courses (MOOCs) and 3D printers, as the government aims to shake up the ICT curriculum.

"In our lifetimes, traditional industries, markets and workplaces have been totally transformed; new products, new technologies and new applications - like Instagram, Tumblr, Spotify and Snapchat - develop and become mainstream parts of our lives with breath-taking rapidity," he said.

"[This} is why we need an education system which is open, creative and adaptive - which is open to innovation, which can use technology creatively to advance learning and which is structured flexibly to adapt to change."

Gove pointed to a number of UK companies which offer online courses at university level, such as Udacity, which is working with the likes of Google, Salesforce and Cloudera to deliver big data skills required by employers.

The MOOCs are "already changing how universities - and, very soon, schools - operate," he said, adding that the government is currently consulting on introducing online courses for 16-19 year olds in the UK.

However Gove also warned that that the government will struggle to keep up with the pace of change, with tech companies making the transition from start-up to mainstream recognition with "breathtaking" speed.

"Government regulation cannot keep pace with the scale of change technology brings. When I spoke here two years ago, Instagram and Snapchat had barely been heard of, now they're mainstream. How can government departments legislate for and regulate innovations which develop at such speed?"


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