At 10:13 AM 2/21/01 +0000, [log in to unmask] wrote:

> >>I recommended to several department chairs that both schools of
> >>Engineering and Computer Science should require a one year internship
> >>prior to graduation.
>
> >Interesting. My own proposal is similar to this.  My proposal is that
> >prospective software developers should get a REAL degree in Math, Science,
> >and/or Engineering (preferably all three), THEN do (at least) a one year
> >internship.  I tend to think it would be better if it were 1 1/2 years or
> >longer.
>
>I don't see why Comput(er|ing) Science should not be considered as a REAL
>degree, as long as the course content is adequate.

. . . etc.

Well, the explanation is rather a long one and in just a few minutes I am
going to leave home for most of a week or more.  So here is the short answer:

To learn what one really needs to learn to have a chance to be a good
software engineer simply requires a lot more time than is available in the
Undergraduate curriculum.  It also requires a substantially different
format, for some aspects of the process, from that available in the college
classroom.  And much of the important stuff requires more maturity than
many Freshmen and Sophomores have (especially males).  The first problem is
especially serious here in the U.S. where our K-12 educational system is
failing so miserably that we simply cannot assume nearly as much
understanding of Math and Science (and NOTHING of Engineering or
Management) of incoming Freshmen as we could 20-30 years ago.  This aspect
of the problem is really rather severe.  Moreover, in spite of a lot of
"talk" in recent years about solving this aspect of the problem, I see
little improvement.  Things are probably continuing to get worse.

I'll return to this issue in more detail in a couple weeks.  :)

sro


S. Ron Oliver, semi-retired professor of Computer Science and Computer
Engineering.  www.csc.calpoly.edu/~sroliver

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