Innovation is often seen as a spin-off from academia to industry but a new Plymouth University degree for software developers at the Cornwall College Camborne is something of a “spin-in”.
The BSc (Hons) in Computing Technologies has been designed with help from Software Cornwall, a collaboration of the county’s software development enterprises, education providers and business support organisations.
Took flight on the beaches
The honours degree is a third year top-up to an existing two-year Foundation Degree in Computing, Networking and Software Development currently being offered by The Cornwall College Group. It now means that students will be able to graduate with honours, without having to move or travel to Plymouth or beyond, to extend their studies.
Belinda Waldock, Software Cornwall programme director, said, “This is a great example of what Software Cornwall was created for. We identified a ‘broken pipeline’ in software skills provision in the county and have engaged directly with education providers to fix it.”
The resulting syllabus has been hailed as an example of how businesses can help shape vocational courses, especially in sectors where requirements are in constant flux. Modules in the course will include agile methods, e-business, digital forensics, cloud computing and security. In addition, students will be out to elect for options in advanced networking or advanced object-oriented programming.
The programme will also provide a pathway to employment through a project-based component, which will be delivered in conjunction with Software Cornwall members.
Director of business and professional at The Cornwall College Group Dr Tanya Ovenden-Hope, commented, “Working in partnership with digital technology employers across Cornwall has enabled us to design an ambitious and sector-relevant honours degree in computing which is validated by Plymouth University. The BSc (Hons) in Computing Technologies, will start in September 2015 and provide huge opportunities for those seeking a career in computing.”
As wide a net as possible was spread to determine the industry’s input into the contents of the degree syllabus. At the annual conference of practitioners of agile programming methods, Agile on the Beach (pictured), held in Cornwall last September, delegates were asked what elements they would like to see in a degree that would encompass agile programming techniques.
Toby Parkins, Agile on the Beach founder, said, “I’m really pleased that our Design a Degree workshop last year has resulted in this industry-driven degree programme. It’s good news for those graduates getting a more relevant course, better value and greater chances of getting a job.”
More information on the honours degree and the range of computing courses available across can be found at the Cornwall College Group website or by calling 08452 232567.