Computer science degrees see 13% applicant increase

New research from the Chartered Institute for IT has shown computer science degrees to have the highest increase in UK university applicants

Computer science degrees have seen the biggest increase in applicants this year across UK universities, according to British Computer Society (BCS), the Chartered Institute for IT. 

Overall, there were 158,340 applications to start full-time undergraduate degrees in computing, compared to 140,420 last year, making for a 13% increase. 

Of the total applicants to UK undergraduate computing degrees, over 30,700 were women (19%). 

Data from UCAS also showed that the number of 18-year-olds pursuing computing degrees increased by 21%. 

This was predominantly driven by applicants from England (up 18%) and Wales (up 10%), while Scotland and Northern Ireland remained broadly unchanged. 

Julia Adamson, director of education at BCS, said: “The demand for computer science follows the rising profile of AI, global cyber security, social media safety, and tech’s role in understanding climate change and pandemic modelling. 

“The impact of Covid-19 and lockdowns have also made us realise how important digital technologies are in our personal and professional lives. The long-term challenge of closing the gender gap in computer science remains clear and starts at school level.” 

The institute has said that full reporting on specific fields contained within the computing subject area, such as AI and gaming, will be published at the end of the year.

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