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"Team Ada: Ada Advocacy Issues (83 & 95)" <[log in to unmask]>
Thu, 20 Apr 2000 10:37:22 -0400
Michael Feldman <[log in to unmask]>
Michael Feldman <[log in to unmask]>
<[log in to unmask]> from "W. Wesley Groleau x4923" at Apr 19, 2000 04:11:45 PM
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[said Wes]
> Teamers,
> The guy was asking for help on his homework.  First we gave him subtle
> hints, then not-so-subtle, then we gave him the whole algorithm in
> English, and finally, we posted the entire solution for him to compile
> and turn in.
> ("we" meaning Team-Ada in general)
> :-) :-)
Thanks for supporting us profs in the trenches, Wes. Students' first
line of inquiry for help should be their instructors, _especially_ in
introductory courses like the one this student is in. Encouraging
students to ask for solutions from the Internet is really undermining
the careful way in which we set up our courses. It is _highly_ unlikely
that the prof in Australia asked his students to go to the net for
homework help.

This might happen in an advanced course, where part of the process
is to be resourceful in finding reusable code, but surely not in a
first-year course like that at Cowan, where the goals are not to
learn clever language-dependent tricks (such as Steve posted) but
to understand fundamentals. Recursion is one such fundamental.

Solving problems that appear at the ends of chapters, and so on,
is part of the homework. Authors do not usually give out full
solution sets to the public, for precisely this reason. In my case,
my publisher stores a solution set in a password-protected ftp site,
to which (only) a bona fide instructor can gain access. The student
told me privately that his class is using John McCormick's fine book;
perhaps John will weigh in here with a comment.

Please take heed and lend your support to the educational process.
Team-ers, I promise not to undercut your work, if you promise not
to undercut mine.:-)

Mike Feldman