A Computer Science Educational Program for Establishing an Entry Point to the Computing Community of Practice
InSITE 2008 • Volume 8 • 2008
The rapid evolvement of the computing domain has posed challenges in attempting to bridge the gap between school and the contemporary world of computing, which is related to content, learning culture, and professional norms. We believe that the interaction of high-school students who major in computer science or software engineering with leading representatives ofthe computing community of practice may motivate them to pursue their studies further or pursue a career in the field. Accordingly, our program aims at exposing talented high-school students "directly by leading experts" to state-of-the-art computing research, advanced technologies, software engineering methodologies, and professional norms. The interaction between the students and the experts, who actually become role models for the students, occurs at two levels: (a) during enrichment plenary meetings, and (b) through one-to-one interaction in which students develop software projects under the apprenticeship-based supervision of professionals from the computing community of practice. In the last four years, six hundred students participated in enrichment activities; 86 of these students accomplished high-level software projects under the supervision of experts.
self-learning, out-of-school learning, project-based learning, mentoring, role models
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