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Study Outlines Steps Higher Education Should Take to Prepare Quantum Workforce

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An interdisciplinary team of students conducts quantum research in an integrated photonics laboratory.

A new study outlines ways colleges and universities can update their curricula to prepare the workforce for a new wave of quantum technology jobs.

Credit: A. Sue Weisler

Researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder and the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) interviewed managers at more than 20 quantum technology companies across the U.S. to determine how colleges and universities could update their curricula to prepare the workforce for quantum technology jobs.

The researchers found that companies look for candidates with traditional STEM degrees, but prefer candidates that understand fundamental concepts in quantum information science and technology.

RIT's Ben Zwickl noted that "many positions don't need to have deep expertise, but students could really benefit from a one- or two-semester introductory sequence that teaches the foundational concepts, some of the hardware implementations, how the algorithms work, what a qubit is, and things like that."

The researchers suggest colleges and universities offer introductory, multidisciplinary courses with few prerequisites for software engineering, computer science, physics, and other STEM majors.

From Rochester Institute of Technology
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Abstracts Copyright © 2020 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA


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