Teen among youngest in a global exam

Willetton Senior High School student Sam Bateman.
Willetton Senior High School student Sam Bateman.

SAM Bateman has passed a challenging software exam usually taken by university graduates and IT professionals.

The Willetton High School student, who is on the autism spectrum, was one of the youngest competitors to pass the globally accredited exam and hopes to use the test as a means to enter university.

Run by the International Software Testing Qualifications Board (ISTQB), with support from Curtin University’s Autism Academy for Software Quality Assurance (AASQA), the exam tests the fundamental concepts behind software testing.

Sam’s parents Amanda and Doug Bateman said they were thrilled with their son’s achievement.

“Sam experiences some difficulty in certain subjects at high school, especially English, which could have prevented him from taking all the subjects needed for university entrance,” Mrs Bateman said.

“The certification received by Sam for passing the ISTQB exam, along with the other skills he has developed through AASQA, are helping him to build a portfolio for his high school graduation, which can be used to apply for alternate entry into university if necessary.”

AASQA founder and director Tele Tan said the exam was so challenging it offered young people with autism an alternative pathway to tertiary education.

“It’s great to see information and communication technology and engineering industries acknowledging the strengths of young people on the autism spectrum, recognising the fact that their skills will be utilised to help the industry remain technologically competitive,” he said.

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