Archive for December 2, 2011

Please PLEDGE on CS Ed Week!

Next week is the third annual Computer Science Education Week (December 4-10).

But there’s still time to pledge your principled support for CSEdWeek (no $$ required), and it takes less than a minute to do so:  Think about asking your colleagues to pledge, or even your students (who might be involved in outreach, roadshows, visits to schools, etc.) to pledge.

Why does it matter? It’s crucial that policy makers and the general public see there is grass-roots support for computer science education.  Your pledge helps demonstrate that support.  Larger numbers helps.

If you’re participating in some activity in support of CSEdWeek’s mission, please take the second step in pledging and tell us about it.  It doesn’t even have to happen next week. You can pledge anything you’re doing any time to promote computing or support computer science education.

And, if you only have five minutes, here are some ideas on how you can turn those five minutes into support for K-12 computer science education:

Thanks in advance for your pledge … it’s important for the future of CS Ed, especially at the level of public policy.

December 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm Leave a comment

InfoWorld Programming trends: Education matters less, more JVM/JavaScript-target languages

I found this piece at Infoworld really interesting.  Originally, I was going to blog on it because of the growing trend of languages that target the JVM or JavaScript — what are the implications about Java and JavaScript when there’s so much interest in creating specialized languages on top of them?  But then I got to Programming Trend #8 and realized that this was really a piece for us to talk about — does traditional computing education matter anymore?

Ask any project manager and they’ll say there’s not enough talent from top-tier computer science departments. They may go so far as to say they would hire a new CS major from a top school without reading the résumé. But ask this same desperate project manager about a middle-aged programmer with a degree from the same school, and they’ll hesitate and start mumbling about getting back to you later.

Indeed, it isn’t unheard of to find major technology companies complaining to Congress that they can’t find Americans capable of programming, all while defending themselves in age-discrimination lawsuits from older programmers with stellar résumés and degrees from top universities.

Some of this may suggest that education doesn’t have the same value it used to hold. Older workers with degrees that used to be valuable are saying companies want only young, unfettered bodies that will work long hours. It leaves you to wonder whether it’s the age and implied lower pay expectations, not the knowledge that makes fresh college graduates so desirable.

via 11 programming trends to watch.

December 2, 2011 at 8:20 am 6 comments

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