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"Team Ada: Ada Advocacy Issues (83 & 95)" <[log in to unmask]>
Michael Feldman <[log in to unmask]>, John McCormick <[log in to unmask]>
Wed, 8 Dec 1999 08:27:45 -0800
Hal Hart <[log in to unmask]>
Hal Hart <[log in to unmask]>
text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
text/plain (125 lines)
MIKE/JOHN:  Do either of you know Henry Walker at Grinnell?  See his
signature file at end below.  Friend or foe of Ada, or simply a fan of
Lewis Carroll?  It would be handy to have a friend in important education
places like this, even if just to help assure PL-neutrality is done right.

PS:  The whole content of this message about AP CS (see url below) and
university intro CS1-CS2  should be of interest to concerned software folks
everywhere, independent of language passion.

>Date:         Wed, 8 Dec 1999 05:46:56 -0700
>Reply-To: "James C. Taylor" <[log in to unmask]>
>Sender: SIGCSE Member Forum <[log in to unmask]>
>From: "James C. Taylor" <[log in to unmask]>
>Subject:      RESPOND!: Feedback Requested on Directions for AP CS
>To: [log in to unmask]
>>From (and reply-to):  "Henry M. Walker" <[log in to unmask]>
>In April, 1999, the College Board approved a request from the Advanced
>Placement (AP) Computer Science (CS) Development Committee to form an Ad
>Hoc Advisory Committee to explore future directions for AP CS. Since that
>time, an advisory committee has been appointed, and discussions have begun
>concerning possible directions for AP CS.  (More information on the
>committee and on the process may be found at
> .)
>As the Ad Hoc Advisory Committee begins its discussions concerning possible
>directions, it will be helpful for committee members to receive feedback
>concerning desired outcomes for the introductory CS1-CS2 sequence at the
>college and university level. (At the high school level, the corresponding
>course typically is labeled CS AB.) The Ad Hoc Advisory Committee
>anticipates that colleges and universities may choose significantly
>different mechanisms to achieve the desired outcomes. Rather than initiate
>another round of language and pedagogy wars, the Committee has put aside
>(for awhile) any consideration of outcomes for CS1. Further, the Committee
>wants to focus on high-level goals -- independent of a specific
>language. Thus, comments are specifically solicited for the following.
>All of the following questions refer to goals to be met at the end of the
>introductory CS1-CS2 sequence.
>  1. To what extent should object-oriented design be a central part of
>     CS1-CS2? For example, at the end of CS1-CS2, should students
>     be comfortable working with the concepts of classes, objects,
>     is-a and has-a relationships, aggregates, single inheritance, and
>     encapsulation? (If object-oriented design should not be part of
>     CS1-CS2, please outline an appropriate alternative.)
>  2. At the end of CS1-CS2, should students be comfortable programming in
>     some language, using concepts of conditional execution, iteration,
>     and recursion?
>  3. Within CS1-CS2, should problem solving emphasize high-level
>     constructs (e.g., wrappers, iterators), low-level constructs (e.g.,
>     pointer manipulation), both, or neither?
>  4. What example classes should be included in CS1-CS2 (e.g., stacks,
>     queues, lists, trees, hash tables, priority queues)?
>  5. Within CS1-CS2, to what extent should students understand abstract
>     classes that need to be subclassed for instantiation?
>  6. Within CS1-CS2, should students have extensive experience with dynamic
>     memory allocation and/or memory deallocation?
>  7. What techniques of program testing, program verification, and/or
>     program documentation should be included in CS1-CS2?
>  8. To what extent should exception handling be emphasized within CS1-CS2?
>  9. What additional high-level topics which should be a central part of
>     CS1-CS2?
>In providing feedback, please make your comments language independent;
>references to specific languages are especially discouraged at this stage.
>*Feedback Requested*
>Please send your comments either individually or collectively to the
>members of the Ad Hoc Advisory Committee:
>    Owen Astrachan, Committee Chair, ([log in to unmask])
>    Corky Cartwright, ACM Ed Board Representative, ([log in to unmask])
>    Gail Chapman, College Board Representative, ([log in to unmask])
>    David Gries, ([log in to unmask])
>    Cay Horstmann ([log in to unmask])
>    Frances Hunt, Educational Testing Service Representative ([log in to unmask])
>    Richard Kick, ([log in to unmask])
>    Fran Trees ([log in to unmask])
>    Mark Weiss, AP CS Development Committee Representative ([log in to unmask])
>    Henry Walker, SIGCSE Representative ([log in to unmask])
>    Ursula Wolz ([log in to unmask])
>An on-line version of these questions may be found at
> .
>We look forward to receiving your feedback.
>Henry Walker,
>SIGCSE Representative to the Ad Hoc Advisory Committee
>[log in to unmask]
>Henry M. Walker
>Department of Mathematics and Computer Science
>Grinnell College
>Grinnell, IA  50112
>Fax:  515-269-4984
>I'm sure I'm not Ada, for her hair goes in
>such long ringlets, and mine doesn't go in
>ringlets at all; and I'm sure I can't be Mabel,
>for I know all sorts of things, and she, oh!,
>she knows such a very little!  Besides, she's
>she and I'm I and--oh dear, how puzzling it
>all is!
>Lewis Carroll