New College Durham graded, as outstanding by Ofsted, recently hosted a MOS Test Fest on campus to increase employability of students and productivity of staff.
As one of only a small number of colleges to have been granted Foundation Degree Awarding Powers (FDAP), New College Durham can design its own foundation degrees and can introduce an exciting range of new qualifications such as the Microsoft Office Specialist Programme to maintain the overall success rate which places the College in the top 10% of all colleges nationally for performance.
Growing Lack of Digital Skills in 21st Century Workplace
The digital skills gap in the UK is widening, according to a new report from the CBI which finds that over two-thirds of companies struggle to fill vacancies for digital roles. One in five firms were unable to find employees with basic digital skills, such as writing documents using a word processor or using spreadsheets effectively, and more than half reported challenges in recruiting software engineers or data analysts.
Industry leaders often cite the widening digital skills gap as one of the biggest issues when recruiting new staff. New College Durham introduced Microsoft Office Specialist Certification Program to its curriculum two years ago to help bridge this gap, as a result of well-established links with employers across many industries and business sectors that the College has.
Increasing Student Employability prospects with Microsoft Certification
Microsoft Office Specialist; MOS certification is the world’s most recognised computing qualification proving skills and abilities in Microsoft Office applications. Adding MOS certification to a CV and LinkedIn profile helps to differentiate students in today’s competitive job market, broaden their employment opportunities and result in higher earning potential.
Microsoft MOS Test Fest Day
In order to increase awareness about the value of Microsoft Certification to its students, New College Durham hosted a MOS Test Fest. To support New College Durham in delivering a large volume of Microsoft Certifications in one day, Prodigy Learning attended the Test Fest Day to give students the opportunity to sit certification exams, along with goodies & prizes to promote the event. The hugely successful day saw over 200 students sitting Microsoft MOS Certification Exams, which qualified them to enter the MOS World Championship 2020 Student Competition (MOSWC20). One student scored over 95% in just over 21 minutes. The maximum time available to complete the exam is 50 minutes.
Veronica Spowart, Curriculum Manager, New College Durham commented that “Everyone who took part in the day has seen the benefit of certification and the College is keen to repeat the event every year. Students will continue to take certification over the coming months, and we have high hopes of having representation at the forthcoming MOS Championship.”
Andrew Lenehan, Regional Account Manager, Prodigy Learning added “I am delighted with the fantastic results from the first ever TestFest at New College Durham. As a County Durham native, I know the particular challenges of the local jobs market and New College students having MOS certification as well as their academic qualification will really set them apart from fellow job seekers. Students going on to university will also benefit from superior Office knowledge. I am hopeful to see some of these students at the MOS Championships in London in 2020.”
For further information about the courses available at New College Durham: www.newcollegedurham.ac.uk