Technology is rapidly changing the way most people do their jobs, transforming the nature of work and increasing the demand for new types of digital skills. These digital skills are likely to be increasingly important to the economy as we emerge from the current COVID-19 crisis.
We are delighted to announce that Northampton College has received funding from the South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership’s Local Growth Fund to support the establishment of a Digital Academy at our Booth Lane campus.
The new facility will offer a range of courses and apprenticeships, allowing individuals to explore digital career opportunities and progress through a pathway of qualifications leading to higher education, apprenticeships and real-life job opportunities. We will be working closely with employers to address the skills gap in the region and ensure that our offer suits their requirements.
Students will have access to a state-of-the-art learning environment that includes an esports arena, a TV studio, digital workshops, a Mac suite and a digital design studio plus a whole range of specialist facilities and equipment.
We live in a world where new technologies play an increasingly important role across the economy and society, ranging from the basic digital skills people need to maximise life’s opportunities to the general digital skills increasingly needed in almost every job, or the specialist knowledge for particular technical roles.
Our Digital Academy courses will help to fast track students into digital careers and improve their professional IT skills. We offer pathways that lead to ‘in demand’ digital jobs in software development, cyber security and digital marketing.
Our short courses will help students to get the most out of digital marketing, coding, games design and much more. Courses and apprenticeships at a range of levels are available online, at our Digital Academy in Northampton, or even at an employer’s premises.
The Digital Academy will welcome its first students from September 2021 onwards.
What do we mean by digital skills?
‘Digital skills’ is a very broad term that covers a wide range of knowledge and competencies.
- Baseline digital skills - Digital literacy skills that employers ask for in the vast majority of jobs across all sectors in the UK jobs market. Knowing how to answer your emails, access a company’s files on Google Drive, or tweak a website’s code are just a few examples of the types of digital skills employers are looking for.
- Digital skills - Competences in and/or knowledge of IT tools including computer programs and programming languages.
- Specific digital skills - Digital skill requirements for more technically oriented jobs in areas such as customer relationship management (CRM) software, computer networking, digital media and design software, social media tools, and search engine analysis.