Buckinghamshire New University has joined forces with HP to launch a new 'pay-as-you-learn' IT course.

The university is offering the HP Institute Accredited Technical Associate (ATA) programme, which will receive its first student intake this autumn. The course provides a flexible, "low-cost" way for individuals and businesses to develop skills and access IT courses and training events on a pay-as-you-learn basis.

Professor Derek Godfrey, deputy vice chancellor of Bucks New University, said: "We have worked with HP for a number of years and this initiative follows hot on the heels of the recent Bucks New University and HP work-based Foundation Degree in IT Services Management."

The HP Institute Accredited Technical Associate (ATA) training has been specifically developed for individuals interested in pursuing a career in IT, students wishing to follow industry-approved training in parallel with their academic studies, and employers who wish to develop the skills of their internal IT departments.

Workers in the UK are more confident that they have the ICT skills that will allow them to change jobs within a year than many of their European counterparts, new EU data has shown.