Friday, May 23, 2014

Microsoft Announces Educational Projects For Reversing IT Skills Gap

Of late, Microsoft has been churning out several interesting projects in order to help advance education and prepare the students for demanding IT jobs in future. This educational venture proposed by Microsoft was presented in the British Education Technology and Training Show as well as at the Education World Forum.

As mentioned on the official website, this is an invitation-only conference, wherein the main focus is on including innovative ideas in teaching and "debating future practice in education." The various sponsors of EFW show include big IT firms such as Microsoft, Intel and HP. Microsoft’s Anthony Salcito who serves as the vice president of Worldwide Education said that the software giant’s commitment to education and provide quality features is unparalleled. In a blog post, he mentioned that Microsoft is certainly experiencing the effects of an IT skills gap and that "that technology itself will not transform education." He also stated that the company has partnered with several educators, administrators and students for over 25 years and is taking great measures to improve the quality of education. Upon releasing the statement, Microsoft help forum witnessed several active discussions from the existing users who expressed their views on this topic.

The software giant has been working in unison with UNESCO as well as with several leading NGOs and the main goal has been to provide excellent digital literacy services using mobile devices and literacy education for the users. The announcement of the Microsoft Certified Educator (MCE) Exam and the Teaching with Technology e-learning curriculum, which will soon be available in several other languages, is a part of this innovative educational strategy. As it was mentioned in the Microsoft help forum, this e-learning curriculum will be available in languages like Spanish, Brazilian, Portuguese, Arabic, Indonesian and Mandarin. Salcito states that the coursework will be available in all the countries and is also intended to enhance the overall quality of education, and to make students better prepared for future IT jobs. Now, Microsoft started to work in collaboration with other biggies in the field such as Intel, Pearson, and interactive learning specialist Promethean, for the Deep Learning program. This involves taking input from over 1000 schools, and the main focus is on how to get students to connect and flourish in the modern world.

The Collaborative Assessment Alliance or CAA that Microsoft has partnered with other companies, thus promises to be a lot beneficial in making the students well acquainted with the recent advancements in the technology.

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