FDM Group urges girls to consider IT A levels as gender gap widens

Following yesterday’s revelation that female GCSE pupils have widened the gender gap further, FDM Group is urging young women to consider taking IT related A levels.

It has been revealed that more than one in four female pupils were awarded an A or A* at GCSE level this summer, expanding the academic bridge between the two sexes considerably.

26% of girls’ entries were awarded these top grades this year compared to 19.8% of boys, creating the broadest gender gap since the introduction of the A* grade in 1994.

FDM Recruitment Manager, Madeleine Field, said, “This latest generation of female GCSE students is clearly extremely gifted. Therefore we would encourage all of these young women to seriously consider studying an IT related subject after high school. There are far too few women who do so at the moment despite the fact that studying the subject could lead these students into high flying positions within an extremely lucrative industry.”

According to the e-skills 2011 report ‘Technology Insights’ only 9% of students studying A-level Computing and 15% of those reading the subject at university are female.

And as the IT industry falls deeper into the crisis of a severe skills shortage, the UK’s largest IT graduate employer, FDM Group, is seeking to encourage more girls to pursue careers in the field by alerting them to the benefits of setting their sights on roles within the field.

The opportunities within the field are certainly impressive and according to IT recruitment website CWJobs, the number of IT jobs increased by 18% year-on-year in the second quarter of 2011.

Average wages within this industry are also on the up and according to research conducted by recruitment firm Greythorn, salaries for IT and telecoms professionals have risen by 7.5% in the past year.

However, despite these promising statistics, just 14.4% of IT professionals in the UK are currently female.

FDM Chief Operating Officer, Sheila Flavell, said, “At this time the IT industry is missing out on a huge talent pool of gifted young women who could help to reduce the threat of an IT skills shortage. As an industry we need to nip this problem in the bud by encouraging more women to opt for IT related A-levels, degrees and ultimately careers.”

FDM is committed to encouraging more women to study and work in IT and has launched a dedicated “Women in IT” campaign.

To view FDM’s “Women in IT” pack please visit here.

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