8 votes

Strategies for independent learners to identify gaps in their knowledge

First off, it's worth mentioning that everybody has these "blind spots" or gaps in their knowledge. Nobody can know everything, and some of the smartest people I've met are very open about that fact. ...
6 votes

Strategies for independent learners to identify gaps in their knowledge

First, I will note that curriculum-design and self-learning are both on-topic right here on CSEducators, so this very site can be a great resource for the self-learner in computer science! There is a ...
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6 votes

Working around language quirks

One strategy that's sort of similar to the "embrace" strategy described in the other answers is "acknowledge" -- not only do you explore the quirk, you explicitly acknowledge that it's a flaw or ...
  • 3,995
4 votes

What things aren't obvious about reading documentation? How can I explain to others how to do it?

In some cases, I suspect the problem may be that the student doesn't really want to understand, they want to do (e.g. complete the lab exercise or coursework). Unfortunately these days there is an ...
4 votes

What things aren't obvious about reading documentation? How can I explain to others how to do it?

I think that both of the posters so far (Fureesh and Buffy) have great insights. I would only add one more piece I've observed from my own students. It starts with the observation that most people ...
  • 31.8k
4 votes

What things aren't obvious about reading documentation? How can I explain to others how to do it?

I have a partial answer, perhaps, as to why it is so hard for novices to learn from documentation. But the answer isn't universal and doesn't apply to all products/languages. There are some companies (...
  • 35.3k
3 votes

What IF Thinking

This may be a result of students not relating their everyday usage of some words to their formal meaning, of course, but the issue really is that you can use teaching strategies to improve that. Some ...
  • 35.3k
3 votes

What things aren't obvious about reading documentation? How can I explain to others how to do it?

I don't believe there is anything special to reading documentation. As most things programming related, it's a bit of basic knowledge and a lot of experience. You obviously need a basic understanding ...
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3 votes

Working around language quirks

In essence, you have two choices. You can embrace the quirks, or you can hand-wave them away. Embrace "Now, take a look at this code. What do you think it will do? Let's check it ou--- whoa! ...
  • 31.8k
2 votes

What things aren't obvious about reading documentation? How can I explain to others how to do it?

Documentation is to (e.g.) a stack overflow answer as a dictionary is to a textbook of english. (Or, put another way - by the logic of this question, english language SE would/should have very few ...
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2 votes

What things aren't obvious about reading documentation? How can I explain to others how to do it?

Documentations are written in a very specific format that follows certain rules. When were those rules explained to a person who starts learning programming? People look for patterns in order to ...
  • 366
2 votes

Working around language quirks

If you don't want the students to get hung up on the language quirks for the language you are teaching, there are probably many ways to "work around" them. If you don't want the students to get hung ...
1 vote

Strategies for independent learners to identify gaps in their knowledge

This answer is based on the following comment from the OP : I'll define a "gap" as "a lack of awareness of some specific topic relevant to what the student is interested in". The topic could be ...
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1 vote

Strategies for independent learners to identify gaps in their knowledge

I faced this issue, a few years ago, when I started taking on .NET development projects. For instance, I would run into a piece of code that I never really heard of, but I see that there would be a ...
  • 1,874
1 vote

Working around language quirks

Since most of the answers here already provide a good pedagogical approach, I'm going to add one element you can use to completely shift the tone when these moments occur: use a meme. Find humor in ...
  • 9,052
1 vote

Working around language quirks

It depends on the programming level of the students. In my case, students are just starting out with Java. I tell them to ignore the quirks and multiple ways of doing things (e.g., adding 1 to an int ...
  • 1,044
1 vote

Working around language quirks

In Bertrand Myers book/course (I have only read the book) “Touch of Class”, he deals with this, by first teaching a language with few quirks (Eiffel). Then at the end of the course/book, after all of ...

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