Apple today announced a new app development curriculum designed for students who want to pursue careers in the fast-growing app economy. The curriculum comes as a free download from the iBooks Store.
Called "App Development with Swift", the full-year course aims to teach students the elements of app design using Swift, Apple's increasingly popular programming languages. Apple said students who undertake the course will learn to code and design fully functioning apps, gaining critical job skills in software development and information technology in the process.
Beginning in the fall, six community college systems serving nearly 500,000 students across the United States will be among the first to offer the curriculum, according to Apple. Participating colleges include the Alabama Community College System, Columbus State Community College, Harrisburg Area Community College, Houston Community College, Mesa Community College, and San Mateo Community College District.
"We've seen firsthand the impact that coding has on individuals and the US economy as a whole. The app economy and software development are among the fastest-growing job sectors in America and we're thrilled to be providing educators and students with the tools to learn coding," said Tim Cook, Apple's CEO. "Community colleges play a critical role in helping students achieve their dreams, and we hope these courses will open doors for people of all ages and backgrounds to pursue what they love."
Since its launch in 2014, Swift has been consistently promoted by Apple as ideal for kids who are keen to code, with its gentle learning curve demonstrated in Swift Playgrounds, an app that teaches children how to use the language. The new curriculum includes a comprehensive student guide with playground exercises, mini projects and quizzes, as well as a teachers guide with grading rubrics, solutions code and Keynote presentations.
Swift has become one of the most sought-after skills for freelance developers, experiencing more than 200 percent year-on-year growth, according to one study.
Earlier this month, Apple announced the creation of a $1 billion Advanced Manufacturing Fund focused on creating jobs in the US throughout its supply chain. Apple said the new Swift coding curriculum is another example of its commitment to economic development and will help create even more career opportunities for students across the country.