----- 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.


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?


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