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Wednesday, 6 November 2013

What information is there about GCSE results in Computer Science, in London?

Colleagues of mine at Queen Mary run courses for teachers who want to learn programming skills so that they can pass that on to their pupils. Although A-level Computer Science has been around for a while the GCSE courses are relatively newer and I think began in about 2010 so I suppose I should be able to find some results and statistics by now.

From previous experience of looking for statistics on Government websites it's never all that straightforward and you end up trawling through umpteen tabs in umpteen spreadsheets before finding the data formatted in the way you want it. In fact I actually created a website to help me remember how I'd managed to find stats information about diabetes when I worked as a Science Info Officer at Diabetes UK.

A press release1 from Next Generation Skills had a useful table for the numbers of pupils taking A-level Computer Science in London. It seems that 376 London pupils took an A-level in Computer Science in 2012 with 42 in Lewisham and none in Camden.

This data2 comes from data tables hosted at the GOV.UK website, from the Department of Education. Dishearteningly there are lots of 'tables and additional tables', eight in fact, perhaps I shouldn't be so defeatist about spreadsheets ;)

I think the info I'm after, for A-levels, is in Table 12a (Number of GCE A level entries by state-funded students aged 16 to 18 by subject and local authority) which can be found in 'Additional Tables 3: SFR05/2013' or sfr05-2013t12abc.xls but where should I go looking for the GCSE stuff? 

According to ‘How teachers are preparing for the new computer science GCSE’ in The Guardian (published 13 September 2012) the AQA launched their GCSE in Computing in the previous week (~7 September 2012).

These are the courses I'm aware of...

Other useful links I need to investigate 

See also the pictures in these tweets, from @NextGenSkills

1 Low take up Computing across country and London hurts hi-tech growth, says Next Gen Skills (13 January 2013):

2 Statistics - national statistics: Revised A level and equivalent examination results in England: academic year 2011 to 2012 (Published 24 January 2013)
Collections: Statistics: 16 to 19 attainment and Statistics: A/AS levels (key stage 5)

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