Before I detail how I video record in-class programming activities I want to provide some context. I’ve been teaching introductory programming courses for close to 10 years and most recently I instructed a first-year first-semester course called CSCI 1060U: Programming Workshop I. My general philosophy on teaching programming is based on two simple rules:
Learning programming should occur through doing not through seeing. In my experience active programming activities are a much more effective way to teaching then passively showing already written code on a PowerPoint slide.
Never teach an example that you can’t program yourself in the classroom. This rule helps me avoid the use of overly complex examples that maybe difficult to follow (which is an easy way to demotivate students who are new to programming).
I have participated in UOIT recruitment events for the past 10 years and I have answered a lot of questions from potential students and their parents. One of the most common questions that I get asked every year is:
Why should I choose to study Computer Science at UOIT?
In my opinion here are the benefits of UOIT’s Computer Science undergraduate program:
1. Reputation and national ranking.
In the 2017 Maclean’s university program rankings, Computer Science at UOIT was listed nationally as a top 10 Computer Science program (4th in Ontario). Started in 2005, UOIT Computer Science was the youngest program included in the rankings and UOIT was also the smallest university to be ranked as a top Computer Science institution. It’s often easier at a smaller university to receive a more personalized educational experience – one where you know your classmates and your professors. Continue reading →
This semester I decided to try using Slack as an alternative communication channel in an upper-year university course that I teach. I’d already been using Slack in my research lab and I was familiar with the features and I thought it might translate well to the university class setting. The one disclaimer I would offer to anybody considering using Slack is to make sure that you use any technology to improve learning don’t just use technology for the sake of it.