Adobe officially Creative Suite 3 yesterday – and has been working to make its products attractive, and appropriate, to UK education institutions.
The company's director, worldwide schools, Megan Stewart, stopped-off in London to explain how Adobe hopes its creative products will be valuable to UK schools and colleges.
As part of this approach the company has developed a range of curriculum-focused resources for UK educators, and is offering training, certification and school site licenses to ensure educators can field its industry-standard products in class.
"It makes sense for children to develop their skills using creative software that they will use professionally later," Stewart explained.
It's an attempt to educate today's children into becoming tomorrow's trained talents, so-called 'workforce preparedness'.
Adobe has developed three certificated career curriculum courses to accompany its software. There's courses for design, web and video and these will launch in July.
The company hopes that by offering steep educational discounts and providing extra resources focused on national education requirements, its products will become more essential to pedagogues.
As announced yesterday, Adobe has introduced five new configurations of Creative Suite 3, including: Creative Suite 3 Design Premium and Design Standard editions; Creative Suite 3 Web Premium and Web Standard editions; and Creative Suite 3 Production Premium. There's also a sixth configuration, the Creative Suite Master Collection, which combines all Adobe's creative applications in one box.
The same collections – along with standalone applications from the suite – are being made available (with a hefty educational discount) to the UK education sector, so cash-strapped headteachers can choose to purchase the collection most applicable to their needs.
For design teachers, curriculum training comes in the form of the course, Visual Design: Foundations of design and print production. This course covers the gamut: communications, planning, evaluation and final delivery all get a look. Each project within this course is designed to boost photographic, graphic design and print production skill.
Digital Design: Foundations of Web Design is Adobe's curriculum-based course for the web. The course covers design, communications, project management and web technology, and helps teachers teach essential web design skills, again using Adobe products.
Adobe's third course, Digital Video: Foundations of Video Design and Production, teaches a similar set of skills for budding video practitioners. Project planning, communication, distribution and editing skills are covered in the course, which aims to boost the skills required for storytelling, video capture and edit, and preparing content for DVD and the web.
Certification and price
In autumn, Adobe will launch its Adobe Certified Associate scheme. This certificated scheme aims to help teachers (and students) develop the requisite skills they need in the company's three curriculum strands: design, web and video.
Adobe's final strategy is price. The company is making School Site LIcenses available to primary and secondary schools, who must pay one flat fee in order to license their software on up to 500 computers, as long as the computers are in one building.
Students aren't licensed for their own computers under this scheme, but are able to purchase CS3 at an educational discount from the company.