/r/CSEducation

Photograph via snooOG

A community for computer science educators and education researchers. Discussion and links of CS ed research, best practices, pedagogy, curriculum, policy, etc.

A subreddit for computer science educators and education researchers. Discussion and links of CS ed research, best practices, pedagogy, curriculum, policy, etc.

Related websites:

  • SIGCSE -- the largest professional organization of CS educators, a special interest group of the ACM
  • The Computing Portal -- resources and the like

The Reddit Education Network:

  • /r/Education: A place to discuss the news and politics of education.

  • /r/AdultEducation: A place for adult educators to discuss tips and tricks to engaging an adult audience.

  • /r/ArtEd: A place for art educators to discuss the importance of art education and to share and collaborate on resources.

  • /r/CSEducation: A place for computer science educators and education researchers.

  • /r/ECEProfessionals: A place for early childhood educators to learn, grow, and contribute as professionals.

  • /r/ELATeachers: A place for English teachers to share ideas and lessons and to brainstorm and collaborate on new curriculum.

  • /r/HigherEducation: A place to discuss and share articles related to higher education.

  • /r/HistoryTeachers: A place to discuss and share resources for history educators.

  • /r/ScienceTeachers: A place for science educators to collaborate on and contribute tips, ideas, labs, and curricula.

  • /r/SpecialEd: Where special education teachers can discuss and share resources related to the education of students with special needs.

  • /r/Teachers: A place to discuss the practice of teaching, receive support from fellow teachers, and gain insight into the teaching profession.

  • /r/TeachingResources: A great place to share and discover teaching resources, such as demos, blogs, simulations, and visual aids.


Recommended subreddits and websites:

  • /r/slp: Speech-Language Pathology


Other Related subreddits:

/r/CSEducation

24,687 Subscribers

3

Classroom Design

Hey all,

I'll be essentially building a computer science program in my district. I'm really excited for the opportunity! My director said that he wants to start the program off right with a nice new room. So he is allowing me a budget to redesign my classroom. What are some things that you love in your classroom or wish you had? I'm trying to build an idea of what my dream classroom would look like, but I'd rather have input from those who have done this before. I'll be teaching a digital literacy class, and intro to Java Class, and AP Computer Science A.

The kids are 1:1 with Lenovo Chromebooks and I will have a Laptop cart as well.

Grades 9-12

Edit: a comment asked for detail but then deleted the comment. So here is my reply:

Just myself in the room. I envision my classes starting with a brief lecture and then individual and/or collaborative work on projects using the concepts we just covered. So a little heavier on the lab/exercise than on lecture.

My digital literacy classes will have about 30 kids. The intro and AP Java classes will most likely be closer to 10 or less.

8 Comments
2024/04/06
12:09 UTC

3

GitHub Classroom + Codespaces for SD curriculum or...?

What do you think of this setup, and do you use it?

If not, what would you recommend in its place and why?

This will be for online learning with hundreds of students, often in cohorts of 30-50 but sometimes as small as 5 to a cohort.

4 Comments
2024/04/04
17:49 UTC

2

Survey on Project-Based Learning in CS Courses

Do you use PBL in the classroom? If so, help improve the state-of-the-practice in PBL by completing this short survey:

https://forms.gle/mfCFcU3N4LsFxENXA

2 Comments
2024/04/02
12:43 UTC

2

Courses for OOP in python

I am going to be teaching a section for high school age kids that introduces OOP, and I have no resources for this. Does anyone know of a good course online that I can follow to teach this in a simple and clear way, Or know where I can find some creative assignments I can use for assesment?

8 Comments
2024/03/29
16:53 UTC

4

How do we make students transition from Scratch to Java? How do we even get people interested in Scratch?

In our country, many pass-outs don't even want to opt for CS later in their lives. I was someone who, out of sheer love for the subject right from the beginning, mastered BASIC, Turbo C++ and then Java as our school taught those (normally, people only teach Java). Over the consecutive years, to others' surprise, I got the highest marks in every exams taken in the class. From 6th grade to 12th grade, I've arrived a long way... anyway...

I wanted to make a guide on how to make CS more interesting and intuitive. I have tried to take down what I could, but... I am not satisfied. I can't make them feel the independence of a function from the main() method, which can tangibly be felt on Scratch while making a block. It's like, we ourselves are making a new statement by making a method.

How to introduce them to a text-based programming language like Java?

FYI, these are the syllabi for the examinees appearing for the year 2026...

for Grades 9-10: https://cisce.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/21.-ICSE-Computer-Applications-26.pdf

for Grades 11-12: https://cisce.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/25.-ISC-Computer-Science-2026.pdf

As you can see, BlueJ is the gold standard for its 'objects-first' approach.

Should one start with Stride to transition from Scratch to Java or should they use something different? Should they even use Scratch to transition to Java? How to make them feel interested in Scratch?

(In the latter syllabus, Greenfoot was also recommended, but it felt a bit confusing, they obviously won't be able to understand what is going on.)

(Before commenting, please check out the links at first.)

10 Comments
2024/03/29
04:37 UTC

5

Wiley/zyBooks is shutting down CodingRooms, and I need a good replacement

In an unfortunately similar situation to two years ago, https://codingrooms.com got bought out and is getting shutdown (note that although the site only says K-12 support is ending, Wiley is emailing higher ed instructors that there's a full shutdown coming). I'm evaluating options.

The class isn't purely programming assignments unfortunately, which makes it a little more complex. The first half is a lot of assignments with multiple choice and extended response questions. So, ideally I would have a single platform where students could have

  1. Assignments of multiple choice & free response questions
  2. Programming assignments with:
    1. Built-in editor for Python programming (command line for running commands is okay but not necessary)
    2. Easy submission and automated unit testing of their python programs
    3. Precise feedback mechanisms when grading
  3. A grade book with results [nice-to-have]
  4. LMS integration (my school uses desire2learn) [nice-to-have]

I've looked at:

  1. zyBooks: very far from supporting anything close to what's needed for a CS class
  2. codegrade: looks fine, but doesn't seem to support non-coding assignments
  3. codio: same as codegrade

I'm surprised that I can't find anything new since the last time this happened. Anyone have a platform they're happy with?

3 Comments
2024/03/28
20:48 UTC

4

Question for a comic!

Hello! I'm an illustrator and I'm working on a comic in which a student somehow does a CS exercise so wrong they accidentally give a computer sentience. I need to actually show a bit of the code and, because it's very silly tonally, I thought it would be funny if the code was clearly something incredibly basic. I'm talking baby's first program level.

I know absolutely nothing about CS, but if anyone here has a recommendation for a snippet of code I could include for this joke, I'd appreciate it!

Thank you, and good luck with all the teaching!

EDIT: Thank you for the replies!! These are exactly what I was looking for, thank you.

4 Comments
2024/03/27
22:14 UTC

3

Full-time, tenure-track CS teaching position at North Seattle College

NSC is adding another full-time, tenure-track position to help stand-up a new data science degree program.

https://hcprd.ctclink.us/psc/tam/EMPLOYEE/HRMS/c/HRS_HRAM_FL.HRS_CG_SEARCH_FL.GBL?Page=HRS_APP_JBPST_FL&Action=U&FOCUS=Applicant&SiteId=1&JobOpeningId=13379&PostingSeq=1

Feel free to hit me up with questions if interested.

0 Comments
2024/03/26
00:26 UTC

7

Are Flowcharts Obsolete for Teaching Programming?

Let me share a story from around 2019. I was teaching basic algorithms at a free tertiary school and initially began with direct coding. While about 60% of the class grasped the concepts well, approximately 40% struggled with the code. One student even asked, "How many codes do I need to remember to be able to program?" This made me rethink my approach. Also they struggle a lot at first with syntax errors, indentations and the structure of the programs. About 20% left the course after 4 classes. Note that this is a free school and many students are just testing the waters with programming...

The following year, I introduced Scratch at the beginning of the course before transitioning to coding. The initial part went smoothly, but the transition to coding proved challenging for some students.

So, in the subsequent year, I decided to incorporate flowcharts into my teaching method. Remarkably, about 80% of the students understood the material well and got really engaged. When we eventually shifted to coding, they could easily relate the flowchart concepts to actual code.

Since then, I've continued using flowcharts. However, some students with some coding experience who joined my class expressed skepticism, considering flowcharts to be outdated. Initially, they were demotivated, preferring to dive straight into coding.

So,

  • What are your thoughts on this?
  • Do you prefer starting with flowcharts or Scratch when teaching programming?
  • Do you prioritize helping struggling students or do you continue progressing with those who have already grasped the concepts?
6 Comments
2024/03/19
23:17 UTC

1

Opportunity: Looking for 10 CS teachers to test a new tool for administering CS classes

Hi everyone!! My name is David, I'm a computer science teacher. We've created an online tool for ourselves for administering CS courses with student auto-registration and submission auto-correction. We've used it since 2020 for ourselves and we think is really cool, so we are looking for something like 10 teachers that would like to use and test it. We are giving completely free access and recognition for being the first pioneers in helping us. For more info check this video on how easy is to create a course: https://youtu.be/GelFgJj7Ti4 and this other video that shows some IDE capabilities: https://youtu.be/B7lGfFG6Tjk

Thanks a lot!!

11 Comments
2024/03/16
23:38 UTC

3

Posters?

I had one more question, I apologize I posted the other day.

Anyone have any resources for nice looking posters I could hang up in my classroom? I already have code.org recruiting posters. I’m looking for anything in the following topics:

• computer science • engineering (like the design process) • robotics

If you have any ideas please let me know. My school has a print shop so all I need are high resolution images. Looking to do this cheaply, free if possible. Thank you if you can help.

3 Comments
2024/03/13
17:31 UTC

3

I made a test and printed my "coding book for the whole family" book on paper... What's your opinion about it? Should I publish this? ... or it will be a waste of time?

6 Comments
2024/03/13
01:06 UTC

3

Robotics Ed Group?

Was wondering if there was a vibrant online group for discussing robotics education. This sub is the closest I can find on Reddit. I joined a Facebook group but I found a lot of spam in there. Anyone have any suggestions?

Background: I’ve been teaching high school robotics for almost 3 years at a school with no prior experience. The course has no set curriculum and is currently a nonscience elective. I see the potential with our equipment but unfortunately I have been improvising every year because I don’t know what learning goals the students should have. I’ve been quite flummoxed but I’m hoping talking to other professionals can help guide me toward a better direction, maybe even so I know what to ask of my admin for PD. Thanks for reading this far.

2 Comments
2024/03/11
15:48 UTC

0

I created a tool for making presentations easier - seeking your feedback to make it better!

I'm excited to share a tool I've been working on that I think could be useful for educators and students, especially those who work with code or math in presentations. It's called QuickDeck ( https://quickdeck.app ), and it's an online slideshow maker that uses markdown to format slides.

With QuickDeck, you can easily create presentations with:
- AI-powered slide generation
- Code blocks with syntax highlighting
- Support for beautifully typeset mathematical equations
- Easy export to PDF, HTML, and more

QuickDeck is still in its early stages, and I'm looking for feedback from the community to make it even better. I'd love for you to give it a try and share your thoughts!

0 Comments
2024/03/11
08:39 UTC

5

Worth gaining non-CS teaching experience?

Finishing up a CS degree, but could start teaching this year in another subject.

Will that experience benefit career progression or would I be better served by finishing the degree ASAP and starting to teach CS?

4 Comments
2024/03/10
20:35 UTC

2

Unofficial Praxis Score

I’m currently the robotics coach where I teach. Next school year, the principal wants to make robotics into an actual course with me teaching it. However, I would need to get certified as a computer science teacher. I just took the Praxis and have an unofficial score of 152. A passing score is 149. What are the chances I lose 4 or more points when I receive my official scores?

2 Comments
2024/03/10
17:46 UTC

2

Code.org - APCSP

Is anyone else using code.org to teach APCSP this year and finding that the curriculum has a lot of mistakes and holes... several tasks the students have been assigned assumed they would know things that they have not yet been taught, some of the assignments have mistakes in the code (mistakes in the samples even), and some concepts seem to be introduced without fully connecting to the rest of the curriculum... is anyone else having these problems? It is my first year teaching this course and sometimes I feel just as lost as the kids when it comes to some of these issues... With 2.5 months left until the exam are there any tips or resources I can share with my class to help them overcome these struggles?

6 Comments
2024/03/07
15:04 UTC

1

Costumes as a List

Does anyone know if costumes in Scratch meet the AP CSP Create Performance Task "list" requirement? They probably don't, but they do behave similarly to lists in Scratch. Thanks!!

0 Comments
2024/03/06
23:54 UTC

1

Recommendations - teaching app development

For the last 5 years of my teaching career I’ve been using metaverse studio (https://studio.gometa.io/) to teach lower school students years 8/9 some basics about the app development lifecycle and to a lesser extent augmented reality concepts.

It’s been pretty rock solid, intuitive (for the most part) interface, highly customizable and flexible enough for students of any ability to make simple to more complex app ideas. I had students creating scored quizzes, scavenger hunts, probability games and the best part - completely free!

Sadly discovered today that it’s come to an end. It’s also got me a little stressed, as I just assumed this would be like previous years and I’d spin up another class group we could post creations to.

Just wondering if anyone has any app/website recommendations that are like metaverse: preferably free, simple learning curves, customizable to allow for ideas of all types.

7 Comments
2024/03/05
10:33 UTC

12

Help spending a £1000 grant ASAP

Hi - I applied for a grant a while back for £1000 for the school I work at to be spent on improving computing for 11-14 year-olds. Lo and behold the grant was approved, pending a breakdown of spending. I've been off work for various reasons and the grant needs to be in by Wednesday morning.

I want to focus on improving programming skills without having to buy anything too "bitty". We already have MicroBits and some kits but I wouldn't say no to hardware. We have a code club I run at the school but it mostly focuses on free online materials courtesy of Raspberry Pi.

Are there any useful permanent licences for software or websites you could suggest?

Thank you in advance for any help.

12 Comments
2024/03/04
22:42 UTC

3

MakeCode

I'm looking for an introductory programming curriculum aimed at grade school or middle school students that uses MakeCode.

I've found a couple of options for advanced placement high school students but they aren't very direct, and the age group is not quite right for me. And apparently you have to be a teacher to access that "free" material. So that's not going to work.

Anyone have any suggestions?

1 Comment
2024/03/03
14:32 UTC

1

Any developers here wanting to shape the future of Docker?

1 Comment
2024/03/01
13:23 UTC

5

Opinion on a traditional programming pattern (sentinel) solutions

I'm teaching 15-16 years olds introductory courses on computer science. Mostly introductions to programming in Python.

I find that students often struggle with the while loop. Sometimes it's easier for them to program this style of loop in a 'repeat until' style.

Let's take for instance the following classic problem:

Continue asking for whole numbers until the user inputs -1.

Then calculate the sum of these numbers.

Many would write:

number = int(input("Give me a whole number, enter -1 to stop"))
sum = 0
while number != -1:
    sum += number
    number = int(input("Give me a whole number, enter -1 to stop"))
print(sum)

Sometimes I find it easier to delay the condition like so

flag = True
sum = 0
while flag:
    number = int(input("Give me a whole number, enter -1 to stop"))
    if number != -1:
        sum += number
    else:
        flag = False;
print(sum)

Or a bit shorter:

sum = 0
while True:
    number = int(input("Give me a whole number, enter -1 to stop"))
    if number != -1:
        sum += number
    else:
        break
print(sum)

I would give full marks for all these solutions. (they have 50 minutes of CS each week, I'm not aiming to turn them into professional programmers, but for them to be able to tackle similar problems)
(Personally I have a small preference for the second style, since the input is only asked once)

-----

However today I had a discussion with a teaching assistant (for CS education) at a college. He would give the last solutions zero marks. He said those styles are 'wrong programming' styles. Students should think about the condition first, and then about the content of the loop (in his opinion). The "repeat until" style is a bad style of programming according to him, and should be discouraged.

I have always been taught two styles of conditional loops, 'do while'-style and 'repeat-untill' style.But is this really out of fashion? Curious to hear your opinions.

(I've been teaching for 15 years now, and I learned to program about 20 years ago. )

4 Comments
2024/02/28
22:11 UTC

2

Survey about AI in the work field

Hello! My classmates and I would greatly appreciate it if you could spare a few moments of your time to respond to this survey for our English class. Thank you in advance!

https://forms.office.com/r/EV8x8NDBjm

0 Comments
2024/02/28
20:12 UTC

5

Course Selection

Hello everyone, I got the opportunity to study any two courses from this list for this semester. Which two should I select in order to get even an entry level position in data analytics/data science domain?

Courses I've studied previously are :

Statistics and Probability, Data Structure and Algorithms, Python Programming

2 Comments
2024/02/26
14:55 UTC

1

Suggestion in programming!

Hi I am 17m from India and currently I am doing CSE in diploma and I will do btech after that, although I only have learned the basic of C language and I want to make its base strong and I am currently In 4th sem...i have DSC(data structure in C) and give some suggestions about what should I do to make my Language strong.I also want Java, python,linux to learn ....I also want to try going for Cyber security although I am no where 1% of its progress......Any suggestions?

10 Comments
2024/02/24
07:34 UTC

3

What Side quest you guys do?

Hey, I just wanted to ask you guys, when you have free time and you feel like doing something creative or productive related to IT field, what you guys do?
For eg :- Writing blogs, doing side projects , reading CS books etc
Thanks :)

1 Comment
2024/02/22
13:46 UTC

0

User struggles to remember where he saved the latest copy of a document. Should I switch him to Google Docs?

I'm not sure where to ask this. I'll try asking here.

Background

A friend of mine has a serious psychiatric illness, called schizoaffective disorder. He lives with his parents. He sometimes does bartending, and also gets government disability benefit cash. His laptop is old and slow. For word processing, I think he normally uses a parent's PC instead.

I've been helping my friend apply to university as a mature student. The school wants a copy of his resume.

The problem

His resume is in the LibreOffice Writer .odt file format. He keeps a copy of the current version of his resume. He also keeps copies of some older versions, just in case. But these versions may be stored in different places.

He's struggled to remember where the latest version is stored. Perhaps it could be in the Documents folder, or on the Windows desktop, or in a subfolder, or on a USB flash drive.

I'm thinking of encouraging him to move his resume into a cloud word processor, like Google Docs or Word 365. Such a cloud word processor might store version history. He can store his resume as just one file in one place, with automatic version control. Whenever he needs to send someone a copy, he can export a copy in Word .docx format.

My questions

A.) Should I indeed encourage him to move his resume into a cloud word processor, such as Google Docs or Word 365?

B.) If so: Which cloud word processor should I recommend, and why? Is the free version of Word 365 fine even though it can only store 25 previous versions?

C.) He's a close friend of mine. But he sometimes struggles mightily with getting things done. He also struggles with the quality of his work (e.g. spelling and grammar). If it weren't for my prodding and help, he might not apply to university at all. Am I wasting my time helping him apply for a part-time university program, even though he might well flunk out of the program?

3 Comments
2024/02/22
08:12 UTC

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