IS curriculum career tracks: a UK study

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Authors: Stefanidis, A., Fitzgerald, G. and Counsell, S.

Journal: Education + Training

Volume: 55

Issue: 3

Pages: 220-233

ISSN: 0040-0912

DOI: 10.1108/00400911311309297

The purpose of this paper is to present the results of a comprehensive study on the specialisations or career tracks supported by the Information Systems (IS) curriculum in the UK. The study utilises the recently published IS curriculum guidelines (IS 2010) to develop a method for ranking the career tracks of undergraduate IS courses in the UK. The research presents a prioritised list of graduate IS careers by taking into account the entire IS course provision in the UK. At the same time, it offers data about the size of the IS curriculum in terms of universities in the UK and the number/type courses they offer. The study relies on a previously undeveloped method for measuring career specialisations for UK IS graduates. Additional work is needed to validate the results through comparisons with alternative methods of measuring the careers supported by IS degree courses. By having concrete data about the state of the IS curriculum in relation to its employability opportunities, the IS academy can make more informed decisions about future curriculum development. Further comparative research can be undertaken to support arguments about the relevance of the IS curriculum to industry needs. There has been no similar UK study on this scale which examines the state of the IS curriculum in relation to the career opportunities it offers. The development of the method for this study also offers insights into the structure and recommendations presented by IS 2010. © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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