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Technical boys and creative girls: the career aspirations of digitally-skilled youths

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Wong, B. and Kemp, P. E. J. (2017) Technical boys and creative girls: the career aspirations of digitally-skilled youths. The Cambridge Journal of Education. ISSN 1469-3577

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1080/0305764X.2017.1325443

Abstract/Summary

Digital technology is increasingly central to our lives, particularly among young people. However, there remains a concern from government and businesses of a digital skills gap because many youths, especially girls, tend to be consumers rather than creators of technology. Drawing on 32 semi-structured interviews with digitally-skilled teenagers (aged 13-19), we investigate their digital career aspirations and examine how identities and discourses of gender can interact with the type of digital careers that are of interest to these youths. While we found digitally-skilled young people still articulate traditional gendered discourses of digital competence, especially around technical abilities, we highlight the growing importance of creativity as a career pathway into digital technology. Implications of the findings are discussed in relation to the new computing curriculum in England, which prioritises technical computing skills, and the discontinuation of Information and Communications Technology (ICT), which facilitates a broader usage of software and digital productivity.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Science > Institute of Education > Improving Equity and Inclusion through Education
ID Code:70247
Publisher:Taylor & Francis

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