UK university launches first-of-its-kind cloud computing course with Microsoft to bridge digital skills gap

A first-of-its-kind cloud computing course has been launched in the UK to help give students the highly sought-after skills they need to launch their digital careers.

The University of Lincoln’s MSc Cloud Computing course has been created as part of a Shared Goals Agreement between Microsoft and the University to prepare graduates for professional roles such as cloud developers, solution architects, DevOps and data specialists.

The programme is the first to implement cutting-edge Microsoft certifications as a part of an MSc degree, and offers students the opportunity to evidence their technical skills through the attainment of industry-recognised certifications.

The launch comes amid a digital skills shortage in the UK. Research from The Learning & Work Institute found that fewer than half of British employers believe young people are leaving full-time education with the advanced digital skills they need, while 76% of businesses said a lack of digital skills would affect their profitability.

Research from Microsoft has revealed the digital skills gap could pose a risk to the UK’s economic recovery, with more than three-quarters of UK leaders citing a large digital talent pool as essential to driving UK competitiveness.

Dr Derek Foster, Programme Leader and Associate Professor in the School of Computer Science at the University of Lincoln, said: “The MSc in Cloud Computing is an exciting and innovative programme designed to equip graduates with the skills they need to succeed in their chosen cloud career.

“The course combines the broad concepts of cloud computing, such as compute, storage and networking, with the opportunity to develop practical skills around cloud architectural design, deployment and development. Students will learn how to create and deploy cutting-edge cloud technologies, equipping them to take on roles such as Cloud Data Engineers and Cloud Administrators.”

Huxley Kendell will be one of the first students on the course. He said: “An MSc in cloud computing is an exciting and genuine opportunity to not only understand what the next era of computer science will be, but to be at the frontline getting hands-on experience.”

Elastacloud is a cloud architecture and data specialist company that is working with the University of Lincoln. CEO Richard Conway said: “We’re proud to be collaborating in partnership with the University of Lincoln to support the development of a highly skilled cloud graduate pipeline as part of our graduate recruitment programme. Lincoln’s Cloud Computing programme is enabling students to develop themselves to begin a career in the fast-growing cloud computing sector.”

Chris Rothwell, Director of Education at Microsoft, added: “The UK urgently needs more people with the right digital skills to help businesses unlock the power of technology and help them thrive. The MSc Cloud Computing Master’s course at the University of Lincoln contains the perfect blend of practical and lecture-based learning to give students the necessary skills to launch their careers. Plus, the inclusion of industry-recognised Microsoft certifications, such as Azure Data Fundamentals and Azure Administrator, allows students to showcase their knowledge to potential employers.”

The MSc Cloud Computing Master’s course runs for one year full time or two years part time. For more information and to apply, visit the course webpage.