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Interim evaluation of the Computer Network Training programme: report


The Computer Network Training (CNT) programme aimed to offer retraining in computer skills to unemployed residents of Forth Valley and to provide a supply of scarce information and communications technology (ICT) skills to the market. The evaluation aimed to assess: the programme’s past performance in relation to the objectives and targets set for it; necessary modifications to its operation to improve its effectiveness; its net additional economic impacts; cost efficiency aspects; and an application to SE PAG for funding for a further extension of the programme.


The methodology consisted of: a review of case files and data; consultations with appropriate personnel in SE and Learning IT; a limited scale web-search for relevant background and supporting data; and a telephone survey of participants on the courses.


In terms of cost effectiveness, finds that net additional benefit at local and national levels are less than anticipated as a result of lower additionality and higher displacement. Observes significant qualitative benefits which ameliorate the quantitative findings. In terms of cost efficiency, finds that 18 weeks training leads to an income increase from unemployment benefits to 10% above the average annual male income for Scotland within 2 years of course completion. Highlights that a discounted calculation of direct and indirect tax receipts shows a payback time within 4 years. Concludes that the course is an efficient investment in human capital, participant experience of the courses is positive, the classroom training component of the courses is highly valued and the placement element of the course is vital to securing an initial ICT sector job.


Recommends the continuation of the programme. Suggests modifications to the operation of the programme would improve cost effectiveness. Recommends a review of the market and the relevance of qualifications offered.

Author Leclerc Associates
Published Year 2009
Report Type Evaluation
  • Labour Market and Skills
    Skills Development, Economic Inclusion