How I got into coding and why I think everyone should do it!

ZX Spectrum, National Museum of Computing, Bletchley ParkIn this, the last of a three-part series on girls and women in computing, PhD student and Further Education lecturer Amanda Wilson describes how an early interest in computing followed by picking up everything she could while working led to a dream job.
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Girls and technology

In this, the second of a three-part series about girls and women in Computing, school student Ellie Gregson suggests why girls tend not to choose STEM subjects.

Young people love to use technology. In school, we jump at the opportunity to use the iPads for research, or to use laptops for typing up essays or creating PowerPoints in class. In my school, when an iPad trolley is dragged into the classroom at the start of a lesson, there is always a race between the students to the front of the classroom, desperate not to have to share it with others, or be stuck with a tablet with a 10% battery life remaining.

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Digital Education Ezine April 2015

Bett 2015 Board 3At last! Or, to use the vernacular, woo hoo! The latest edition of the Digital Education ezine is now out. It contains a round-up of products seen at Bett, articles on girls and women in technology, loads of links and book reviews. Here’s a detailed list of the contents:
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Encouraging girls to do computing: an economics approach

Discussions about getting more girls to do computing tend to focus on strategies like providing role models or some form of positive discrimination. Unfortunately, providing role models is not always easy, and I disagree with positive discrimination on principle. So what's the alternative?
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Where are the girls in ICT and Computing

Social computingIn the context of technology, the main issue is that not enough girls go into computer science studies beyond the statutory provision, or computer-related jobs. Various figures are cited, but it seems to be generally agreed that only around 16 or 17% of students in undergraduate courses in Computer Science in the UK are female, and only around 27 or 28% of employees in information technology jobs are women — a figure that is true for both the UK and the USA. So what can be done about it?
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It doesn’t have to be pink

Make my day, punkI turned my collar up against the wind. A useless gesture, because the wind contemptuously insinuated itself under my skin regardless, but it made me look hard. And hardness was needed in this job. I walked around the playground, glaring at kids who even just looked like they might be thinking of doing something wrong. Crowds of them parted as I approached. One looked shifty.

“You got a problem, son?” I gritted.

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Is The ICT Curriculum Too Masculine?

One of the apparently insoluble problems of the age is how do you encourage more girls to take up ICT or Computing? I think a lot can be done, and have done so myself, but I wonder how far a lot of the effort fails to get to the heart of the issue, which could be the curriculum itself, the way it is taught, or a combination of the two?

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