Survivor: Getting Through That Class the First Time

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Conference Proceeding

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SIGCSE Bulletin (ACM Special Interest Group on Computer Science Education)

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The literature on teaching pedagogy is filled with volumes of material on how to properly design a course. One should consider the background of the students in the course, the educational objectives which students should achieve by the end of the course, coverage of various cognitive levels by those objectives, and so on. All that good advice seems to go “out the window” when faced with the prospect of teaching a given course for the first time. It’s extremely hard to decide on objectives of the course when one is unfamiliar with how students will em- brace the course material, or perhaps personally uncertain of the material to be covered. And, in a rapidly-changing field, “teaching the new course” is likely to remain a common exp erience among computing educators. The purpose of this panel is to discuss experiences and ideas regarding surviving the first time through a given course. The panelists realize that the audience may have ideas and reactions to ideas that are at least as valuable as the ideas that the panelists have. To encourage lively and extensive discussion, the panelists will alternate presenting ideas and fielding reactions and discussion from panelists and audi- ence. Everyone should get an opportunity to share their best tips, tricks, and techniques.

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