----- Original Message ----- From: "R Bartlett" <ra.bartl...@ntlworld.com>
To: "S.A.Fincher" <s.a.finc...@kent.ac.uk>
Sent: Monday, November 30, 2009 4:42 PM
Subject: Re: "Intuitiveness" of programming languages/paradigms


You may be interested to see some of the portfolios generated by
"chalk face" academics teaching introductory programming every day.
I think they speak eloquently of the quality of care educators pour
into their teaching.

http://www.cs.kent.ac.uk/people/staff/saf/dc/portfolios.html


Thanks for that. Some interesting stuff in the portfolios. There are
lecturers and departments that are obviously recognising the difficulties,
and trying hard to come up with a good pedagogy.  And it's good to see the
Schon view of professionalism prevailing over the Illich one!

However, despite all those good intentions, there does not seem to be a move away from the presentation of programming in stages to large groups as a predefined
curriculum, lumbered with baggage such as pesudo code, log books, and all
the accompanying tests and assessment as-you-go, based on more or less elborate
marking schemes, and so forth. That's how it seemed to me on a brief
inspection of some of those portfolios.

I think if you believe in the 'breakthrough' model of learning, all that is
not necessary. Perhaps if one believes that a drip-drip exposure somehow
works, then the approach is more justified?

Richard.

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