Building on our 1:1 computing in education introductory post, the next in our series of blog posts looks at Shape the Future more specifically and the thinking behind the programme, itself.

To put the programme into context with regard to the UK, the UK has a government-wide campaign, led by the Cabinet Office and DWP and championed by Martha Lane Fox, to bring all citizens into the digital society. As part of this focus, equality of opportunity and the economic imperative for digital inclusion is also keenly addressed with a particular emphasis on consumer savings, education, skills, better health and well-being for the individual.

To help address these goals, Microsoft has launched a global programme, Shape the Future, that aims to bring everyone online, better equip them with the skills and confidence needed to succeed and enhance the global competitiveness of the UK. The UK flavour of Shape the Future is directly targeted at students, the long-term unemployed and older techno-sceptics.

From an education perspective, though, Shape the Future can help schools embrace 1:1 computer access and enhance their teaching and learning strategies. Research supporting this is documented in more detail in an earlier post this series, but on a practical basis Shape the Future can help makes 1:1 computing more affordable.

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Shape the Future offers a great device, such as the Acer W510, combined with Windows 8 and Office 2013. A rich mix of additional education software is also offered as part of the programme. These include the following:

  • Windows 7 Pro / Windows 8
  • Office 2010 / Office 2013
  • Skype and Windows Essentials
  • Media tools such as Songsmith
  • CS resources such as Kodu and Small basic
  • Curriculum software such as MS Maths and Worldwide Telescope

What makes Shape the Future particularly compelling, though, is that the programme offers the device, Windows and Office etc for an unbeatable education specific price.

For a comprehensive overview of Shape the Future, the video below outlines the core concepts of the programme. Additionally, to help kick start your Shape the Future movement, visit the RM portal to learn more.