12

Share their own struggles. Period. The instructor can start dispelling the myth by sharing his/her own story (replete with self-doubt, struggle, and frustration most likely) about studying computer science. In Harvard's CS50 course, the professor shares his experience of not starting as a CS major and of essentially taking CS50 himself pass/fail. That's in ...


10

The kinds of things suggested in your question and many similar things won't help them. Learning some other "tool" or "language" or "technique" at a beginners level will still leave them with just a bunch of tools they don't really know how to use. Instead give them a project - preferably a hard project - in which they can use what they have learned, but ...


9

Actually, what you want to do is commendable. And no, at the scale of things you talk about, I don't think you are likely to get yourself confused. In fact, you may have the opportunity to learn different things in an integrated way. In some ways the educational system, which puts different topics in different boxes, isn't optimal and everyone needs some ...


7

First, your classroom needs to be comfortable. No one's going to do well if they fear being called nerdy or some such nonsense. I myself have unfortunately been insulted along those lines, and though I ignored them (I figured, well, I've got better grades than them, so probably a good thing) it was hard to. Second, start small, work up. When I first ...


5

Look at their skills, look at their passion. It they have passion for something, then they will do much better. This passion can not be based on, I think there is money in this. If their passion is Free Software, or systems administration: Then Gnu/Linux. If it is web design, aesthetics, user interaction: Then web design. If it is mobile gaming, or other ...


5

Give the grade not yet, when they don't pass. Don't give grades that they can compare with each other. Praise effort, strategy, progress “This is an interesting strategy”, do not praise achievement. Tell them, that every time that they push outside of the comfort zone, they will grow more neurons, and they will get smarter. Transform the meaning of ...


4

When I want a student to look something up or learn something new on their own, I find that they resist that task, often because they think what I'm asking them to do is challenging. I have found that framing the task with specifics such as "I read through that tutorial myself last week and it took me about an hour to do the task" helps students understand ...


4

I have seen instructors call a wide range of documents "study guides". They have ranged from test "simulations" which are old tests with tweaked questions to a 1 page .txt print out with a bullet list of important topics to study. I have also seen instructors spend an entire lecture on just test review mail but not hand out any documents. In my ...


4

I do study guides because some students may need to list the information just once more to get it. What if they hadn't had that opportunity? They may have missed it. And, let's face it, do a lot of students, especially those at the high school level, have the self-discipline to go over the material once more unless they have a compelling reason? Even a ...


4

In many ways the best study guide is one that the students themselves write. This can be done incrementally throughout the course and is useful even in the absence of exams. There are two ways to go about it, and you can, perhaps do both. Each student should have a deck of index cards and they should carry a few around with them. They can take notes of ...


4

Goal-oriented action Part of this really depends on your goals in administering the exam. If your goal is the traditional idea of creating a nice bell-curve to rank students, having a study guide makes very little sense. You can separate the wheat from the chaff without providing any assistance to the students prior to the test. However, if you want to ...


3

tl;dr Approximate the "real world" practice/environment as the assessment. Pre-setup To begin with, I'm going to presume that there is some form or pre-screening, and/or qualification process. I.e.: having taken such & such course(s), being actively enrolled in some, possibly specific, institution, passed through an interview, etc. The process below ...


3

First of all, kudos to you for wishing to enrich yourself! In addition to Buffy's fine answer, I might recommend an approach to self-studies that I once learned that ensures steady progress on multiple fronts. My understanding is that the technique itself is an old Jewish approach, used for hundreds of years by people becoming talmudic scholars. Put aside ...


3

If you are doing a good job of teaching then your students probably think you are smarter than you really are. They may also think that you arrived magically at your current position without effort or setback. It is good for them to know the truth. That what looks to them like brilliance was more likely just hard work and never giving up. It is also good ...


2

Essential Web - HTML, CSS, Javascript and jQuery. - This is something that is a basic requirement for a lot of jobs where I live. I also believe this is something anybody can learn, even if they are short on time. Java (with Android) - Learn to build an app. Android is pretty straight forward, and does not really require a thorough knowledge of Java itself....


2

Off course it is a broad question and depends totally on the: Student's Interest Student's Aptitude Checking whether that tool/domain has some scope - Say someone wants to work in VB, then I would have really think about it. This survey can serve as a good measure but a word of precaution is needed to check the demography of participants to compare it with ...


2

My opinion is that Essential Web is the way to go in this specific situation. 1. It is clearly employable. I'm inferring from the post that at least one of the motivations of the students in question is to be as employable as possible. When I look at the 3 options presented, I feel like Essential Web is the most generally employable. Also, while I haven't ...


2

Another classification criterium would around the type of exercise. Some exercises are 'here is a problem, write a piece of code to solve it' or 'design a (piece of a) software system'. Others are 'here is some partial code, or code with a mistake, complete or fix it'. Another type is given correct code with the lines in randomised order, put the lines in ...


2

In one sense this is hopeless as you probably can't come up with a classification that everyone would agree with. On the other hand, it is certainly possible for you to come up with a classification that is useful to you and to other people who think and teach like you do. However, the real problem is that "what is elementary" is bound up with teaching ...


2

Seems to me like you should have everyone submit a project within some theme you select every year (to prevent copying of previous projects). (This wouldn't be a general assignment, but more a sort of "show me something cool".) Provide some boundaries - e.g., must be written in Java, must be submitted as a github repo, etc, that test some of what you need (...


1

The only way is to make the unpopular popular! Give your students the right motivation to learn things - but be careful about "important" legacy technology. When you are teaching, focus on the core concepts - those are similar for many languages or topics. COBOL might be outdated, the concepts behind are not. When the students understand the concepts of ...


1

Actually, there is no such age for everyone, and it certainly isn't a disaster for many to be undecided. Many people just want to be educated so they study things, formally and informally with no clear "career" goal in mind. I changed my mind pretty often, but in a narrow range. Other people change careers many times throughout their lives. I think it is a ...


1

Centuries ago (1978) I saw a graph in Creative Computing. It was the cost of writing a line of code divided by the cost of executing it and realised there was good money to be had there. We were as poor as UK people get and programming, unlike the media, isn't determined by how pretty you are or in the case of the BBC who you are related to, the colour of ...


1

tl;dr: Encourage them to start putting together their own personal portfolio webpages. Tell them to create a webpage that showcases projects they've worked on. Don't know how to create a webpage? Now is a perfect time to learn! Then build from there. Was there a project they were particularly interested in? Expand on that, make improvements, make it ...


1

I like your quote: "This isn't me, I am playing a role." Thinking that has saved me from despair on so many occasions... I have been wondering in my work how to "teach abstraction", and it turns out to be the case that it is not possible. If success in programming (let alone all the other areas of CS) is based on being able to think symbolically and ...


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