Changing the face of computer science through inquiry-based education
Effective technology integration can amplify and transform classroom practices, but it's also complex. We support teaching and learning in our course with a variety of digital technologies, including familiar technologies (e.g. Google apps and a learning management system), flexible technologies (e.g. discussion boards and mutlimedia tools), and content specific tools (e.g. Java applets about binary).
Computer science permeates our digital world and almost every professional field. This course exposes students to big ideas in computer science that cross disciplinary boundaries at a college level. Our inquiry-based, student-centered instruction engages diverse student populations with computer science content that is both rigorous and relevant to their lives.
Our course is rooted in the inquiry-based pedagogies of problem-based-learning. Each of our units (a.k.a. modules) is built around a combination of an authentic problem and project, collaboration, student-centered learning, and engaging multimedia and narratives for information delivery. Teaching and learning are supported via variety of PBL scaffolds including rubrics, group contracts, and intermittent checkpoints for feedback.
With a novel approach to computer science education, it's important to understand and evaluate its effect on teaching and learning in a variety of context. We utilize classroom observations, multiple surveys, interviews, focus groups, grades, scores, and web analytics to address a variety of research questions. Via presentations and publications, we hope to inform both practitioners and academic researchers.