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Why do a diploma in IT?

Why do a diploma in IT?Rachel is 16 and is doing an Advanced diploma in Information Technology. Read about how she's ended up working with virtual reality at the National Space Centre.

What’s the best thing about the diploma system?

I like the way we learn. It's not just about passing units and exams. It’s just like working for a company most of the time.

At the moment I'm involved with a link up to the National Space Centre for a virtual reality exercise. We get to act as tutors, working with groups of children from local schools. I love it and it's one of the reasons I went for the course.

What do you study for the IT diploma?

We study all aspects of IT – hardware, like networks and how a computer actually works, and software, like the Microsoft programs, Dreamweaver and Flash.

There is a lot to learn but we find out quite a bit for ourselves. There is some teaching in the classroom but a lot of the time is spent in teams doing project work.

I’m also working on my maths GCSE retake and I'm doing an English Literature A-level for the Additional and Specialist Learning. Functional skills like maths and English are very important and everyone spends time on these as well.

What practical experience has the diploma given you?

I'm already building websites for small businesses in the area! Building websites for companies helps with my diploma, and the diploma helps me to build websites – so it's a great arrangement.

The diploma is two years, and during this we spend at least 10 days in a workplace. I’m going to spend mine with Spalding Eco Centre - the company that asks me to build websites.

How different is studying for a diploma compared to your GCSEs?

I really like learning in a relaxed atmosphere. The diploma means you get time to really understand the subject and you can try things out for yourself.

You're treated like an adult and that makes a big difference to your confidence levels.

We also get to go to real companies and see IT in action. We visited BT and they explained how they were completely dependent on IT for everything they do.

What do you plan to do after your diploma?

I would like to carry on building websites and working with real businesses. I want to stay with the company I work for already and possibly combine that with further study, or another job in IT now that I know what careers are out there.

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Comments

I am really in to IT and this is something which catches my eye

AdamJ 25-3-13