Heading off to SIGCSE 2011!

March 7, 2011 at 9:00 am 4 comments

I leave Tuesday for Dallas and the 2011 SIGCSE Symposium! I don’t have the cycles this year to do a bunch of posts about the events I’m attending at SIGCSE. Instead, I’ll offer a quick overview of the program from my perspective.

Wednesday: I’ve got the SIGCSE Board meeting all day. In the evening, Tiffany Barnes, Sally Fincher, and I are hosting a mini-workshop for future ICER (International Computing Education Research workshop) and Doctoral Consortium leaders: On how to handle paper reviewing, how budgets work for SIGCSE conferences, what paperwork ACM expects, and what are the big issues to pay attention to.

Last chance for change stories!Sally will be gathering more change stories during the conference, and she’ll leave the website open until the end of the conference. Please tell her your change stories before Saturday!. It really only takes 15 minutes, and she wants ANY TEACHER’S stories — high school or undergraduate. http://www.sharingpractice.ac.uk/changestories.html

Thursday. The conference opens with Matthias Felleisen receiving his award for Outstanding Contributions to CS Education and presenting his keynote address. I’m looking forward to it! There is a special session on computer music in CS Ed, a theme we’ve raised here. At the First Timer’s Lunch (which the Board attends as old-timers to welcome the first-timers), Gordon Davies will present as the winner of the Lifetime Service Award. Gordon is past-chair of the CS Department of the Open University UK, so he has great insights into CS education at a distance.

Thursday afternoon, Allison Elliott Tew presents her dissertation in 6 pages and 25 minutes. This will be the first presentation of her instrument, the first language-independent, validated test of CS1 knowledge — should lead to a wild discussion. Later in the afternoon, I’m on a panel about the new CS2013 CS Curriculum volume.

Thursday evening, I’m hosting two BOF’s: One on matching up SIGCSE members to CSTA Leadership Cohort, and another on Media Computation, with five speakers so-far. From 7-10 pm, Barb and I are hosting a workshop on Media Computation data structures: “Listening to Linked Lists”.

Friday morning’s keynote speech is by Susan Landau about her experiences in public policy in DC. Donald Knuth is speaking at lunch, but I have a meeting then. In the afternoon, I’m on a panel on Role and Value of Quantitative Instruments in CS Education — I plan to talk about the from science-to-engineering themes that I talked about in a post from last year. There’s an NCWIT Academic Alliance reception in the evening before the main conference reception, opposite the SIGCSE Business Meeting which I need at attend as a Board member — I’m hoping to swing by the reception after the business meeting.

Saturday, Ria Galanos and I are giving Lijun Ni’s paper (Lijun is expecting in April) on teacher identity. Later that morning, Davide Fossati will give his paper about his study of how CS teachers decide to change their practice. Luis von Ahn is the closing speaker at the luncheon. Barb was supposed to have a workshop on Alice and Media Computation (with Steve Cooper and Wanda Dann) on Saturday afternoon, but it got cancelled. We’d already made our flights back, so we’ll leave Sunday morning to come home.

I’ll blog catch-as-catch-can this week.

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CE21 Meeting Materials now available Contextualized computing ed works — it’s just not there

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Jesse M. Heines  |  March 7, 2011 at 9:51 am


    First, thanks for the “call-out” re the Computing and Music session. 🙂

    Second, since Barb’s workshop on Saturday afternoon got canceled, she is of course very welcome to come by and help out John Maloney and me with our Scratch Music workshop that same afternoon. She’s even welcome to bring you along! 🙂 🙂

    Third, my wife Bonnie will be coming to Dallas with me, and we’re staying until Sunday, too. We would love to have dinner with you and Barb on Saturday night if you’re available.


  • 2. Victor Eijkhout  |  March 7, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    So you’re cancelling your friday lunch meeting, I’m assuming?

    • 3. Mark Guzdial  |  March 7, 2011 at 6:26 pm

      No, I’m not. I heard Donald Knuth speak at ITICSE in Greece a few years ago. He was talking about how the hallmark of “thinking like a computer scientist” was being able to shift levels of abstraction, so it was critical for all computer scientists to understand computing down to the bits and bytes. I asked, “If that’s what CS majors need to know, what do the non-CS majors need to know?” He replied, “I don’t know. I don’t write the for Dummies books.” But at the end of his lecture, he gave me a signed MIX t-shirt for asking the most challenging question of his talk. That shirt still hangs in my office.

      I think Knuth is brilliant, and I’m a huge TeX fan, but when it comes to education, he and I are working on different problems.

  • […] a certain cynical similarity to this paper, and work we’ve reported on about teachers. Davide Fossati’s paper on Saturday describes that faculty he interviewed changed their teaching practice for their own reasons, never […]


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