Introduction of O-Level Computing Subject in all Secondary Schools

Published Date: 03 July 2017 12:00 AM

News Parliamentary Replies

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Ms Joan Pereira, Tanjong Pagar GRC

Question

To ask the Minister for Education (Schools) (a) whether the Ministry will consider (i) offering the new O-level computing subject in all secondary schools and (ii) introducing this subject earlier in the secondary school curriculum at Secondary 1 or 2.

Response

1. The number of secondary schools offering O-level Computing (formerly known as Computer Studies) has increased from 12 schools in 2016 to 19 schools this year, with another 4 more schools joining in 2018. This has provided more opportunities for interested students to take on Computing as a formal subject at upper secondary level.

2. To support the offering of O-level Computing in more secondary schools, MOE has been training more computing teachers since 2015. MOE is monitoring the take-up rate of the subject to ascertain the demand from students and determine if the subject should be introduced in more schools.

3. It should be noted that admission to Computing-related courses in polytechnics and universities does not require O-level Computing. Hence, students without O-level Computing background are not disadvantaged when applying to such courses after secondary school.

4. At lower secondary levels, there is limited curriculum time to offer a new subject. Our main approach is to enthuse a broad base of students in computing and expose them to possibilities of technology through enrichment programmes and co-curricular activities. Learning to program is part of the Applied Learning Programme (ALP) in 41 secondary schools. In addition, MOE also partners IMDA to provide enrichment programmes like the “Code for Fun” and “Lab on Wheels”, which have been well received by schools. As of March 2016, 117 primary and secondary schools have embarked on the Code for Fun programme, benefiting 34,000 students. There are also a number of secondary schools (33 schools in 2016) with info-comm clubs which tap on the support of IMDA to provide learning in areas involving coding such as app development and robotics.

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