TIGA comments on A level results

TIGA said today that while the increase in entries for art and design, mathematics, further mathematics and physics at A level was encouraging, the decline in computing entries was disappointing. TIGA also said that the relatively low proportion of females taking A level mathematics and computing in comparison to males restricts the potential supply of people available to work in the games development industry.

A level results for 2009 show:

• an increase of 7,882 entries for mathematics (and an improvement of 1.2 per cent at grade A);

• an increase of 1,382 entries for further mathematics (and an improvement of 0.6 per cent at grade A);

• an increase of 1,340 entries for physics (with an improvement of 0.2 per cent at grade A);

• an increase of 1,627 entries for art and design (with an improvement of 0.8 per cent at grade A); and

• a fall in entries for computing of 358 (with a decline of 0.4 per cent at grade A).

Males remain significantly more likely to study subjects such as mathematics and computing. 43,055 males took A level maths compared to 29,420 females. 4,256 males took A level computing compared to 454 females.

Commenting on the 2009 A level results, Richard Wilson, TIGA CEO, said:

“The games development sector has suffered from skill shortages in recent years. A TIGA survey of game developers last year showed that 63 per cent of respondents had faced skills shortages over the previous 12 months.

“Computer games developers require talented people with a mastery of subjects such as art, mathematics, physics and computing. It is encouraging to see increases in A level entries in art, mathematics, further mathematics and physics. However, the decline in entries for computing is disappointing.

“The under-representation of females in disciplines such as computing also limits the potential supply of skilled computer scientists available for work in the games industry. Males are almost ten times more likely than females to take A level computing. In the long term, this gender imbalance contributes to the problem of skill shortages.”

Notes to editors:

1. Tiga is the trade association representing the UK’s games industry. The majority of our members are either independent games developers or in-house publisher owned developers. We also have outsourcing companies, technology businesses and universities amongst our membership.

2. Tiga's vision is to make the UK the best place in the world to do games business. We focus on three sets of activities: political representation, generating media coverage and developing services that enhance the competitiveness of our members. This means that Tiga members are effectively represented in the corridors of power, their voice is heard in the media and they receive benefits that make a material difference to their businesses, including a reduction in costs and improved commercial opportunities.

For further information, please contact: Dr Richard Wilson, Tiga CEO on: 0845 0941095; Mob: 07875 939643; or Email: richard.wilson@tiga.org, or, Eva Whitlow, Tiga PR Manager on: 07814039 983, or email eva@tiga.org.

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