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An Innovative Approach to Using Web 2.0 in CS 1

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Stephen H. Edwards …

Stephen H. Edwards
edwards@cs.vt.edu

Published in: Technology, Lifestyle

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  • 1. An Innovative Approach to Using Web 2.0 in CS1 Stephen H. Edwards [email_address] http://web-cat.org
  • 2. What do I mean by Web 2.0?
    • Highly interactive
    • AJAX-based
    • Web applications
    • With a more modern look and feel
    http://web-cat.org
  • 3. What was our motivation?
    • Proactively address recruitment , retention , and attrition concerns:
      • Move away from textbook-oriented assignments
      • Move toward assignments that have real-world relevance
        • Speak to students’ interests
        • Create solutions meaningful outside the classroom
    http://web-cat.org
  • 4. The basic idea …
    • Teach students basic programming skills …
    • … In the context of writing interactive web applications
    • Give students more flexibility and control over the information content in their assignments
    • Culminate with an integrative project that is centered around student interests
    http://web-cat.org
  • 5. So what can they do?
    • Let’s look at a couple of examples
    http://web-cat.org
  • 6. How does the technology work? http://web-cat.org WebDAV Page request AJAX
  • 7. Can students really write this?
    • Let’s try a hands-on example
    • Open your web browser and go to:
    • http://zk.cs.vt.edu/zk/sigcse08/
    http://web-cat.org
  • 8. Let’s discuss …
    • Let’s hear your:
      • … questions
      • … issues
      • … concerns
      • … suggestions
    http://web-cat.org
  • 9. What are the benefits?
    • “ New” experience for students, even if they’ve done lots of programming
    • Forces students to think about creating something meaningful outside the classroom
    • Students can “show off” their work to others easily
    • Nifty technology
    http://web-cat.org
  • 10. There are rough edges to work on
    • No textbooks cover this
    • The underlying framework is still evolving
      • Some features are not complete
      • Some features are not orthogonal
    • Student-level documentation is lacking
    • Error handling needs improvement
    http://web-cat.org