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Tasks
Basic research problem (draft)
Notes
Bibliography
Universities
Monash
Georgia Institute of Technology
University of Southern Denmark
[[http://www.olin.edu][Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering]]
University of Canterbury

Tasks

A1XSketch out a research problem {{Tasks:120}} (2003.11.24)
A2XDo a preliminary review of related literature by listing 5-10 relevant papers or projects {{Tasks:121}} (2003.11.27)
A3XRefine the research problem {{Tasks:122}} (2003.11.27)

Basic research problem (draft)

I want to find out how to teach introductory computer science courses with limited or no access to computers. This is because most schools in the Philippines have limited computer resources. The introductory course typically involves an imperative programming language (Java, C or C++) and the fundamentals of problem-solving. For Java courses, like the CS21A course in Ateneo de Manila University, some object-oriented design is also discussed.

I want to focus on helping schools with limited or no access to computers because I come from a developing country. I would like to help train the teachers in the different schools. They probably feel very frustrated by their lack of resources, but find it difficult to adapt foreign textbooks to their situation. Current computer science education research (algorithm animation, web-based support, distance learning) seems to focus on students who have constant access to a computer or to the Internet. I'm concerned about the students on the other side of the digital divide, and I want to find ways of relating computer science to their everyday experiences so that they feel less intimidated by their computer-savvy classmates.

The split between people with ready access to computers and people who don't is very apparent in the introductory class. Students with previous programming experience and the self-confidence born of practice readily take to the new lessons and confidently work on their own. Their classmates are intimidated by them and may retreat into even more passivity. I want to address that by finding ways to help the second group build confidence, but this is difficult if students in the second group don't get a lot of practice time with the computer.

We teachers reach the upper half of the class, but what about the rest of the people? I firmly believe that computer science is not just for those who took up programming in high school or who have been programming since they were kids. I want people to enjoy it; I want them to see how it makes sense, how it fits into the rest of life. =)

End goal:

I want to work with teachers in different schools to develop creative ways of presenting introductory computer science concepts by using real-life examples. I want to address attitude and confidence when I teach, and I want other teachers to take those into account. I want to help students discover how fun, interesting, and useful computer science really is.

Notes

6. On the Origins of Programmers: Identifying Predictors of Success for an Objects-First CS1

5. Hey, more thoughts on kara

Finite state machines are perfect for pen and paper, because students can check it manually - and they can enlist their classmates for help!

4. More about group reviews

Perhaps setting up this kind of tutoring in-class is a good way to encourage student interaction and close the gap between students with extensive background and students who are new to the topic. Besides, it'll help the geeks develop communication skills, and sometimes they learn something too.

ComputerScienceEducationResearch

3. Group reviews

Watching the students help each other review gives me a warm and fuzzy feeling. I know they'll probably think it's a way for me to get out of teaching - and who knows, that'll probably affect my evaluations - but I think that in their communal meaning-making, they're learning a lot more than from my lectures.

What about the primarily visual learners? I've had a number of people ask me for handouts. I should think about doing something in the line of man perlintro...

(Or what I'm learning from teaching)

2. Gerald Generoso's comment on ComputerScienceEducationResearch --- good karma

Your research problem draft is as truthful as it gets. Coming from the less privileged end of what you refer to as the "digital-divide", it is an extremely steep matter to overcome. It was an awful feeling attending class so witless and afraid of the activities because of the rapidly increasing need to access a computer regularly. I practiced programming on paper and debugging was as awful as my frantic-chicken-scratch. And again your solution/goal is correct and interesting, developing creative ways to teach/present ideas is a graceful solution. Complex or alien ideas are much easier to comprehend if it can visualized or imagined as relating to simpler/mundane incarnations of the comcept. Like the stack structure which is analogous to a stack of trays in a cafeteria. If your putting up a project for that purpose, I am nterested to participate but then again you already proabably have all the help you'll need.

E-Mail from apache

1. An assessment and evaluation of computer science education

Categories: None -- Permalink, Comment form

This looks more at scientific reasoning skills and how computer science classes might help improve that if they work on real-world things.

ComputerScienceEducationResearch Xref: 2003.11.30:1

Bibliography

Universities

Monash

Georgia Institute of Technology

University of Southern Denmark

http://www.mip.sdu.dk/people/Staff/mik.html

Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering

University of Canterbury

but unplugged project and similar endeavors not listed as main research area
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