U of M CSCI 1251 - UMM Computer Science Assessment report (8 pages)

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UMM Computer Science Assessment report



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UMM Computer Science Assessment report

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Lecture Notes


Pages:
8
School:
University of Minnesota- Twin Cities
Course:
Csci 1251 - Computational Data Management and Manipulation

Unformatted text preview:

UMM Computer Science Assessment report 2010 2011 CSci 1251 Computational Data Management and Manipulation Nic McPhee One of the challenges in the scripting part of this class is that many students just don t practice enough Given the class sizes we can t grade the piles of exercises that they really ought to be doing and given their motivation most are there to satisfy a requirement many only do what s assigned Nic and Elena attended the Midwest Instruction and Computing Conference during Spring semester while Nic was teaching this course and Nic attended a talk by Mark Hall entitled Comparison of Online Tools That Can Be Used to Enhance CS1 Distance Learning While the presenter was focusing on on line tools for distance learning it was clear that these tools could provide a valuable source of practice exercises for students in face to face classes as well There were several tools in Hall s talk that used Python the scripting language we re currently using in CSci 1251 so Nic decided to experiment with one of them CodingBat http codingbat com python in what was left of the semester Rather than just telling the students that there were practice problems out there Nic provided two motivational forces to encourage them to try out the problems He said that a certain number of questions on the upcoming exam and on the final would come from a particular set of CodingBat problems He provided a set of optional evening sessions where students could come and work through some of the CodingBat problems together in a structured way A student had to volunteer to come to the front and drive while they and the group would work together to solve a problem No one could drive twice until everyone had driven once which meant that everyone had to be an active participant which is arguably the only real way to learn this type of material and everyone got practice working in teams to solve problems While the results are unavoidably anecdotal the general performance on the second exam



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