Digital and agile foundation course description

Ten-day GDS Academy course covering the fundamentals of digital and agile, for staff working in a multi-disciplinary team.

Course summary

This GDS Academy course is for anyone who will be deployed onto a digital project or programme in a digital role, as part of a multi-disciplinary team.

Course aims and objectives

The 10-day digital and agile foundation course enables you to discover what it means to be part of an agile, multi-disciplinary team, delivering digital services in Government. You will learn about the different phases of service design – introducing agile delivery methods, tools and techniques. You will apply your learning in a simulated project environment and on completion will be familiar with agile methodology and terminology.

You will be assessed throughout the course in two ways:

  • online tests to help embed your learning and focus on any areas where you may need more support
  • observation of your agile skills and qualities throughout the practical exercises

It is important that participants progress onto a digital project soon after completing the Foundation course to consolidate their learning. Participants are not expected to be practitioners in agile after completing the course but will understand the techniques now being applied on digital projects.


  • Welcome and introduction
  • MacBook familiarisation
  • Agile principles and culture
  • Agile simulation exercise
  • User research
  • User stories and journey mapping
  • Introduction to discovery and course project
  • GDS service standard assessment
  • Security identity
  • Security: cyber security awareness
  • Introduction to the internet and coding
  • Objectives review
  • User research in alpha and beta
  • Scrum overview
  • Scrum simulation exercise
  • Agile estimating and planning
  • Backlog refinement
  • Introduction to alpha
  • Sprint planning
  • Digital and customer analytics
  • Governance

Course length

The course takes 10 working days. The course timings are;

Monday: 11am to 5pm

Tuesday to Thursday: 9:30am to 5pm

Friday: 9:30am to 3:30pm


This course is open to anybody at any civil service grade who is, or is due to start, working on the development of a digital service as part of a multi-disciplinary team, or those who are in an enabling role.

Course dates and locations

Location Date Availability
Newcastle 9 April to 20 April Places available

Getting to the GDS Academy offices

Find out how to get to our training locations in Leeds, London and Newcastle.

How to apply

Email with:

  • the course you’re applying for
  • your name
  • your job title and organisation
  • a short explanation of the services, projects or programmes you’re currently responsible for, or will be in the future

We can’t offer you a place on this course if you don’t include this in your email.

Published 9 September 2016