10 votes

What are some non-CS concepts that can be defined using BNF notation?

Going with real-world things which they should be familiar with are best, even if it is completely outside of education. As you have applied the tag for adult education, I'm going to presume it is ...
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8 votes

Do your students pay attention when you speak?

As thesecretmaster once intoned, "Just from my experience as a student, computer out == doing whatever you want." Kids won't learn from you if they won't give you their attention. And a quick ...
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  • 31.5k
8 votes

Do your students pay attention when you speak?

Ask them to switch their screens off. They don't like it if you do it too often or for too long but it's surprisingly effective, saves you having to repeat yourself unnecessarily and forces you to ...
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  • 806
8 votes
Accepted

The confusing Unix permissions terminology

You could point out that a file has an owning user and an owning group. Since “owner” appears twice, specifying o for “owner” would be ambiguous. That's weak ...
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8 votes
Accepted

How to convince students that self learning is an important skill?

In a few days there is almost nothing you can do. Certainly you can't change their habits and attitudes about how to learn in just a few days. You can try, however, to change their behavior by making ...
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  • 34.9k
7 votes

Introduction to programming class: use Spreadsheets to introduce fundamentals

Spreadsheets are probably the most popular functional programming language, and is is some what visual. I have taught it for years 7 to 9, but not part of a qualification based course. Things to be ...
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7 votes

Introduction to programming class: use Spreadsheets to introduce fundamentals

The big disadvantage seems to be that you're re-enforcing their (or maybe your own) preconceptions about barriers to entry, and taking them further from the 'normal' programming environment. Yes, ...
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7 votes
Accepted

Explain to someone that programming isn't just all "if"s and "else"s

Obviously your friend is using a bit of hyperbole, and in truth, however annoyed you may be by his blithe dismissal of our entire field, he may not be open to being persuaded. You may have to resign ...
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  • 31.5k
6 votes

What should be the difference between a university course and developer training?

I teach and develop curriculum at a training-oriented nonprofit, and have taught in an academic setting as well. Here are some of the ways that I try to approach trainings for professional developers: ...
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  • 111
5 votes
Accepted

What non-programming book is vital for learning the CS mindset?

The hardest part of determining anything in computer science is the requirements first. If you don't know what the program should do, then there is no way to do it correctly. Thus, Winnie the Pooh ...
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5 votes
Accepted

Programming curriculum for elderly students

If the students in this course are the same ones, or similarly educated, that finished the last course, you could be over thinking the issue. They don't yet have the exposure to know they want to ...
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5 votes
Accepted

Do your students pay attention when you speak?

As I am not a teacher, I can't tell you any experiences, so I'll just give my thoughs on how I would deal with such a situation. I know this is not exactly what you asked for, but I hope it can be at ...
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  • 961
5 votes

What should be the difference between a university course and developer training?

Colleges and universities in the United States are required by our accreditors to have explicit learning goals and assess our effectiveness at meeting them. (I assume there are similar rules in other ...
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5 votes

How to convince students that self learning is an important skill?

I am posting this answer as a complement to @Buffy's answer, which suggests a deep restructuring of the course and you may not be willing, able or allowed to to do it. This answer is useful if you ...
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  • 680
4 votes

What should be the difference between a university course and developer training?

Rather crudely you might see the differences as being: A university - students engaged in study, where study is an end in itself. Developer training - students engaged in study, where being job ...
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  • 735
4 votes

Do your students pay attention when you speak?

From what I have seen, students who sit with a laptop (and this should be the same for your case, because the point is about having their own computer, and you can't see the screen) very rarely listen ...
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  • 6,227
4 votes

What non-programming book is vital for learning the CS mindset?

The timeless way of building — Christopher Alexander (https://www.patternlanguage.com/patterns/justsostory.html) This is a 3 volume book that includes A Pattern Language. This set of books is ...
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4 votes

Introduction to programming class: use Spreadsheets to introduce fundamentals

I got a chance to teach Introduction to Computing & Programming course to Chemical Engineering entry students and their syllabus included both Programming concepts & Excel. I began the course ...
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4 votes

What does a certification program for CS high school teachers need to include?

The College of St. Scholastica in Minnesota has a Computer Science Education graduate certificate program. It is a four-course sequence designed to add a CS endorsement to a high school teaching ...
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4 votes
Accepted

What does a certification program for CS high school teachers need to include?

As states in the US consider requirements to add a CS endorsement to a teaching certificate, the proposals vary widely. The changing landscape is described in the April 2017 EDC document State of the ...
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4 votes
Accepted

Python IDE for beginners

I'm not a fan of full IDEs for beginners. A few years ago I switched my first year students (Java) from NetBeans to an online tool without any autocomplete or helpers for most assignments and found ...
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  • 3,029
4 votes

Python IDE for beginners

Visual Studio Code. Easy to set up and designed to be simple. I used to use PyCharm and PyScripter with good results. VSC is more versatile. Eclipse is a management pig for beginners. You have to ...
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4 votes
Accepted

Method for keeping records in a computer science notebook?

Based on what you say about yourself, I'd guess that the Cornel system is probably better than either of the other two described here. But that is just because you suggest that you seem to lack the ...
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  • 34.9k
4 votes

What are some non-CS concepts that can be defined using BNF notation?

The literary arts are full of structured strings. The main problem there is finding ones which have sufficiently interesting structure. E.g. ...
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  • 1,683
4 votes

What are some non-CS concepts that can be defined using BNF notation?

Mathematical expressions or natural language are good candidates for these. e.g. from http://matt.might.net/articles/grammars-bnf-ebnf/ ...
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3 votes

Introduction to programming class: use Spreadsheets to introduce fundamentals

The choice of using spreadsheets to teach programming itself is kind of baffling for me. I would rather you use of the several online ways to teach coding, which are much more useful. If online is ...
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  • 1,874
3 votes

Independent research on bootcamp job placement claims

There's not much out there, unfortunately, and what there is is either suspect or sparse. CIRR has probably created the best data that we have, as they engage in 3rd-party verification. These results ...
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  • 31.5k
3 votes

What non-programming book is vital for learning the CS mindset?

Since you said non-programming, rather than non-CS I'd like to add a couple of very small books by V.J Rayward-Smith: A First Course In Formal Language Theory First Course in Computability Both ...
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  • 34.9k
3 votes

What non-programming book is vital for learning the CS mindset?

I find Henry Petroski's book "To Engineer is Human - The Role of Failure in Successful Design" a useful read. I also suggest Tracy Kidder's "The soul of a new machine", but mainly because I was there....
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3 votes

What non-programming book is vital for learning the CS mindset?

Software Requirements and Specifications — Michael Jackson The Mythical Man Month, revisited — Fredrick Brooks Both are software engineering books, however they are very approachable for non computer-...
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