Posts tagged ‘ACM’

ACM Ed Board Meeting in Doha, Qatar, 1-4 May 2010

My blog posts will probably get more bursty next week, as I travel Friday to Doha, Qatar for an ACM Education Board meeting and summit with education leaders in Qatar.  I’m pretty excited — I’ve never been to that part of the world.

The event is being organized by John Impagliazzo, long-time editor of SIGCSE Inroads, member of the Ed Board, former professor at Hoffstra University, and now professor at Qatar University.  The opening ceremonies, including the keynote address by Dame Dr. Wendy Hall, ACM President, are going to be covered by the local television network, Al Jazeera. I’m chairing a panel on Computing Education Research: Challenges and Opportunities, with Heikki Topi of Bentley University (and Ed Board), Boots Cassel of Villanova (and Ed Board), and Mark Stehlik of CMU (and CMU Qatar and the ACM Education Policy Committee).  Part of the meeting is going to be planning a similar event for India, with Mathai Joseph of ACM India.

I think the overall point is to make folks there aware of what ACM offers (in terms of educational resources, conferences, and research) and to draw them into the process.  My talk on the panel is going to highlight the work presented over the last five years at the ACM ICER (International Computing Education Research) Workshop, both to share the findings and to encourage faculty there to submit and present in ICER.  Mark Stehlik is going to talk about activities of the ACM US Education Policy Committee, and how similar organizations could be set up to address education policy issues in other parts of the world.

So when I do post next week, it may be part travelogue/travel-blog, as well as normal computing education related meanderings.  (They’re putting us up at the Ritz-Carlton Doha, right on the Persian Gulf.  Wow! Serious posh!)  I’ll try to report on the meeting, as I get over jetlag and find Internet connections.

April 28, 2010 at 12:04 pm 1 comment

Congratulations to Matthias!

Matthias Felleisen, innovative educator and developer known for the TeachScheme approach, has won the 2009 ACM Karlstrom Award.

Matthias Felleisen, recipient of the Karl V. Karlstrom Outstanding Educator Award for his visionary and long-standing contributions to K-12 outreach programs. In 1995, he founded the TeachScheme! project, which has trained over 700 educators; he was also instrumental in setting up the Bootcamp afterschool programs for students in groups that are underrepresented in the computing field.  A Trustee Professor at Northeastern University, Felleisen contributed the innovative idea of a design recipe to the computing curriculum, a set of steps that helps students focus on problem solving and logical thinking instead of computer details. The Karlstrom Award recognizes educators who advanced new teaching methodologies; effected new curriculum development in Computer Science and Engineering; or contributed to ACM’s educational mission.

via ACM Awards Recognize Computer Scientists for Innovations that Have Real World Impact — Association for Computing Machinery.

March 30, 2010 at 3:35 pm 1 comment

ACM tops list of “meanies” for lack of accessibility

Accessible Computing Mockery (ACM) happily behind the times

via Reading, Ranting, and Computing: 2009 Heroes and Meanies « As Your World Changes.

I linked to the As Your World Changes blog previously, for the eye-opening post on accessibility concerns in CS education.  I found that post particularly useful recently when I was asked to comment on a project that aimed to teach video game design to blind students (among others), using tools like Alice, Scratch, and Kodu.  I knew to ask, “How are blind students going to use a visual programming language?”  It’s an obvious question in hindsight, but I hadn’t made the connection before that post.

Susan Gerhart’s blog ends 2009 with a list of “Heroes and Meanies” in accessibility.  I was surprised to see the ACM heading the list of meanies.  While the ACM’s role in CS education is mentioned, the main complaint is about the inaccessibility of the ACM’s digital library (certainly one of the most valuable benefits of society membership).  That’s a sad commentary, that the most advanced computing professional organization isn’t making their web sites accessible.

The list of meanies goes on with several others that I hadn’t thought about previously. CAPTCHA is philosophically problematic.  The point of CAPTCHA is to prove ‘humanness,’ which it implicitly defines as accurate vision or hearing.  That’s quite an insult to disabled users.

I don’t have any great insights into solving accessibility problems.  I’m still learning about the issues from places like Susan’s blog.  I do think that significant thought-leading organizations like ACM ought to be leading the way by, at least, implementing the existing technologies for improving accessibility.

January 1, 2010 at 12:40 pm 1 comment

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