More than 12 800 entries have been received from over 350 schools for the second round of the Computer Applications Olympiad, an initiative that seeks to nurture and reward computer application skills in high school students.

The annual event is sponsored by UniForum SA, the organisation that maintains the CO.ZA domain registry, and managed by the South African Computer Olympiad Trust (SACOT), an organisation established by the Computer Society of South Africa (CSSA).

In addition to the Computer Applications Olympiad, SACOT arranges and hosts the Computer Aptitude Olympiad and the Computer Programming Olympiad.

The Computer Applications Olympiad was introduced last year and drew more than 6 000 registrations. It focuses on the usage of common application tools such as word processing, spreadsheets and databases.

Peter Waker, CEO of SACOT, comments: “We are really delighted that schools and learners have responded with such enthusiasm to the Olympiad this year with the number of entries more than doubling year-on-year. It reflects a growing awareness in South African schools about the importance of ICT applications in a technology-driven workplace.”

Fiona Wallace, a director of UniForum SA, adds that the organisation is pleased by the number of entries the competition has attracted from entries from schools throughout the country.

Thirteen of the best performers will take part in the final Computer Applications round to be held at the University of Cape Town on 4 October 2011.