Beefy Boxes and Bandwidth Generously Provided by pair Networks
Don't ask to ask, just ask

comment on

( #3333=superdoc: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??
I agree with most of Spolky's points. It's also possible that I'm an just another elitist academic, though ;) Anyway, I think you may be lumping computer science & programming together in the same boat.

Spolsky is talking about universities teaching computer science instead of teaching a programming language. Computer science is a difficult discipline. It is founded on math & logic, and no one is claiming these are easy. Acquiring the appropriate foundational knowledge requires many difficult conceptual leaps. He argues that we should not abandon them just because they're hard. Or if we do abandon them, we shouldn't pretend it's computer science that we're teaching.

It's not as if the universities are just throwing irrelevant material at the students just because it's hard, or just to make themselves feel smart. The hard material is relevant and necessary for understanding the main results the field of computer science. A computer science degree should reflect knowledge of computer science, and I don't think that's elitist.

As for "weeding out", I think that any student who goes into a CS degree program expecting nothing but Java lessons deserves to have a rude awakening, and as early as possible (for everyone's convenience). CS may require a lot more formality and mathematical rigor than a lot of college freshman are expecting.

I'd be willing to bet that there are any number of monks who are happy and successful in programming careers who didn't bother with a jaunt through an institution that espouses Spolsky's elitist views on higher education.
Of course. There's nothing being taught in universities that you can't learn on your own. I also don't think that's the point at all.


In reply to Re: Worst blog post ever on teaching programming by blokhead
in thread Problematic post on teaching programming by Scott7477

Use:  <p> text here (a paragraph) </p>
and:  <code> code here </code>
to format your post; it's "PerlMonks-approved HTML":

  • Are you posting in the right place? Check out Where do I post X? to know for sure.
  • Posts may use any of the Perl Monks Approved HTML tags. Currently these include the following:
    <code> <a> <b> <big> <blockquote> <br /> <dd> <dl> <dt> <em> <font> <h1> <h2> <h3> <h4> <h5> <h6> <hr /> <i> <li> <nbsp> <ol> <p> <small> <strike> <strong> <sub> <sup> <table> <td> <th> <tr> <tt> <u> <ul>
  • Snippets of code should be wrapped in <code> tags not <pre> tags. In fact, <pre> tags should generally be avoided. If they must be used, extreme care should be taken to ensure that their contents do not have long lines (<70 chars), in order to prevent horizontal scrolling (and possible janitor intervention).
  • Want more info? How to link or or How to display code and escape characters are good places to start.
Log In?

What's my password?
Create A New User
Domain Nodelet?
and the web crawler heard nothing...

How do I use this? | Other CB clients
Other Users?
Others perusing the Monastery: (2)
As of 2022-05-20 23:34 GMT
Find Nodes?
    Voting Booth?
    Do you prefer to work remotely?

    Results (76 votes). Check out past polls.