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Priming the Computer Science Teacher Pump Report: Finding a Home for Computer Science in Schools of Education

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This report focuses on Schools of Education (rather than Departments or Colleges of Computer Science/Computing) for creating pathways for CS teacher education.

We challenge US teacher education programs to innovate and integrate a new discipline into their programs. What we propose is nothing less than a change to the American Education canon. Such enormous change will require innovating in different ways, using different models and strategies, before we find models that work. The report, Priming the Pump, will highlight examples of integration from across the United States, and provide concrete recommendations for discussion.

With the expansion of computing education in mainstream K-12 schools, the current training mechanisms for teachers quickly will fall short of supporting a sustainable pipeline of teachers for the scale many cities and states have committed to.

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Priming the Computer Science Teacher Pump Report: Finding a Home for Computer Science in Schools of Education

  1. 1. Priming the Computer Science Teacher Pump: Integrating CS Education into Schools of Ed
  2. 2. What is Computer Science?
  3. 3. Preparing Computer Science Teachers
  4. 4. Moving Beyond Preparation
  5. 5. Identifying a Path Forward Together with 34 institutions of higher education, the team convened a two-day workshop to discuss the current state of CS education in schools of education.
  6. 6. What do Teachers Need to Know about Computer Science?
  7. 7. What should teachers know about CS to teach in Computer Science Classes?
  8. 8. Teachers need pedagogical knowledge that... ● Infuses methods that are shown to be suitable for CS education (i.e. inquiry- based instruction) ● Highlights common student misconceptions and strategies for addressing misconceptions ● Illuminates formative and summative assessment methods to capture student understanding
  9. 9. Teachers need an understanding of the history, policies, structures, curriculum, and instruction that filters who experiences CS Education, and pedagogical supports to disrupt these racial and gender inequities.
  10. 10. Moving from Primarily Professional Development Model and into Pre-Service Teacher Education
  11. 11. RECOMMENDATIONS 1. Schools of education should include content, teaching methods, and state standards for CS in any preparation programs for teachers who may have responsibility for those standards. 1. Faculty designing new courses or programs should partner with practitioners to make sure coursework aligns with any relevant offerings in regional schools and to develop possible sites for student teaching placements 1. Faculty in schools of education should participate in CS teacher events and read/write for CS education research publications in order to include current best practices in coursework.
  12. 12. Teacher Development Models for Computer Science Education
  13. 13. Preparation aligned to Practice Need both content and pedagogy. Currently focused on individual courses - but we need more generalists. Teacher CS content is different from CS professionals.
  14. 14. Preparation aligned to Certification Certification - 27 + DC Approved Programs - 12
  15. 15. RECOMMENDATIONS ● Faculty of education can connect with members of the department of CS who are running professional development or inservice teacher preparation to identify needs and best practices. ● Faculty preparing courses for future teachers should review example syllabi or program outlines from other institutions for common practices. ● Schools of education should make sure teacher candidates have content preparation aligned with national and relevant state standards for CS education.
  16. 16. Computer Science Education in Teacher Education
  17. 17. Training New Teachers Source: http://blog.firebrandtalent.com/2014/11/the-new-skills-you-need-for-the-digital-age/ ❖ Teacher Professional Development ❖ Bugs in the System ❖ Roadblocks ➢ CS as computer literacy ➢ Declining Enrollments
  18. 18. Stand Alone Field Experiences Classroom Service Learning Computer Science Knowledge Programming (for Educators) Data Structures CS- PCK Methods Course Supplemental Licensure in CS Yadav, A., Korb, J. T. (2012). Learning to teach computer science: The need for a methods course. Communications of the Association for Computing Machinery, 55(11), 31-33
  19. 19. Integration Intro to Ed Tech Intro to Ed Psych Core TE courses Preparing teachers to thinking computationally CS/CT in Teacher Ed Literacy Science Mathematics Methods Courses Yadav, A., Stephenson, C., & Hong, H. (2017). Computational thinking for teacher education. Communications of the Association for Computing Machinery, 60 (4), 55-62. DOI:10.1145/2994591
  20. 20. RECOMMENDATIONS ● Schools of education can commit tenure-track faculty lines and resources in collaboration with departments of CS to support teaching and research in CS education ● Schools of education can hire tenure-track faculty who work in computing education research into STEM education lines and encourage their collaboration with CS faculty. ● Schools of education can count CS education research published in conference proceedings at the same level as journal publications to allow junior faculty to get promoted and tenured
  21. 21. CS Courses in K-12 Standalone CS Education in K-12 Integrating CS Education Into Other Disciplines
  22. 22. CS STANDALONE COURSES High Schools: mostly AP CS Elementary/ Middle Schools: few courses INTERNATIONAL High Schools: Israel, Germany, New Zealand, Scotland and United Kingdom Elementary/Middle Schools: South Korea
  23. 23. SUCCESS: AP CS High School AP Computer Science Principles A, a college-level semester-long course taught in many high schools in preparation for the AP exam.
  24. 24. Beauty and Joy of Computing Mobile CS Principles UTeach CS Principles Code.org CS Principles Project Lead the Way* SUCCESS: AP CS High School COURSES
  25. 25. Exploring Computer Science Computer Science Discoveries Programming, Games, and Apps Society SUCCESS: Introductory High School Courses
  26. 26. SUCCESS: Elementary/Middle School Scalable Game Design CS Discoveries CS Fundamentals Creative fogged Guide MakeCodePlay
  27. 27. ISSUES: LACK OF DIVERSITY
  28. 28. ECS Exploring Computer Science
  29. 29. RECOMMENDATIONS • Schools of education should explore offering graduate coursework, certificate programs, or even master’s degrees in CS education. • Secondary teacher education programs need to develop and provide courses for preparing teachers • Teacher education programs should hire CS education specialists
  30. 30. CS AS INTEGRATED COURSE
  31. 31. History of CS Integration PAST K-12 CS education started with mathematics and CS being combined for early geometry learning in the 1980’s (Papert, 1980). PRESENT The Next Generation Science Standards (2013) also include a cross-cutting concept of computational thinking that is well suited to integration.
  32. 32. SUCCESS CS Integration in Schools Boostrap where students learn Algebra through building a video game. Curriculum bridges the worlds of programming and algebra. The assessment show student improvements in solving mathematics word problems, even without scaffolding (Schanzer, Fisler, Krishnamurthi, 2017).
  33. 33. CHALLENGES TO CS INTEGRATION STEM (Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) disciplines are often the first to come to mind when considering the integration of CS education into K-12 subjects. Successfully integrated CS activities have learning goals and either explicit instruction or explicit reflection for both domains to promote learning. CASE: A student may create a simulation depicting viral growth in a population, however without instruction to understand the science behind the simulation or a reflection that enables the student to connect the behavior on the screen to the desired science instructional goals, very little domain learning will occur.
  34. 34. GAPS Teachers have a general contextual understanding for topics (mathematics, history, etc.) taught in K-12 and how they might integrate with each other. In contrast, there is no shared understanding of computer science in even the most basic principles. ➔ We must provide foundational understanding for all teachers in CS and computational thinking,
  35. 35. RECOMMENDATIONS • Schools of education should identify examples of integrated CS education to include in coursework for education students in other disciplines. • Schools of education faculty and students should interact with students and faculty from other departments on campus. • Faculty and students from schools of education should seek out case studies of interventions that did not produce learning gains in interdisciplinary project and discuss what may have inhibited the learning.
  36. 36. Discussion
  37. 37. Computer Science Education in Grades K-8
  38. 38. ● Schools of education should ensure through programmatic requirements that K-8 teachers receive basic literacy instruction in CS as well as foundational CS education pedagogical instruction. ● Faculty in schools of education should have opportunities to familiarize themselves with relevant K- 12 CS education standards for integration into core pedagogical coursework. ● Candidates for ELL or special education licenses or certificates should include cases or examples with CS instruction as a part of their training. RECOMMENDATIONS
  39. 39. Preparing Educational Leaders to Support Computer Science Education
  40. 40. Who are the Educational Leaders in the Field? CS Teachers Principals Superintendents Curriculum Specialists District/State Education Officials
  41. 41. Chart From: Google Inc. & Gallup Inc. (2016). Trends in the State of Computer Science in U.S. K-12 Schools. Retrieved from http://goo.gl/j291E0 What do School Leaders think about CS?
  42. 42. Why Engage Educational Leaders in CS Education? Principals decide course availability and teacher assignments; evaluate teachers Superintendents set strategic initiatives for the district; often selects programs/courses Deans of Education determine faculty hires, set goals and priorities, and network with alumni who are principals, superintendents, and state leaders
  43. 43. Fitting CS in Educational Leadership Coursework Experiences
  44. 44. RECOMMENDATIONS • Computer science educational leaders should participate in conferences and gatherings of educational leadership communities (including superintendents, principals, etc.). • Students in educational leadership programs could create dissertations using “problems of practice” related to efforts to broaden CS education access and opportunity • Faculty in educational leadership programs might use case studies for CS education implementation. There are numerous examples such as Chicago Public Schools, New York City, and many smaller city or rural schools with CS education implementation plans.
  45. 45. Creating the Computer Science Education PhD Pipeline
  46. 46. Finding the CS Ed Faculty We need faculty who can: • Create and run pre-service CS teacher professional development programs. • Conduct research to answer our fundamental questions about CS education and evaluate the effectiveness of what gets developed. • Prepare CS Ed graduate students, who will become the next generation of CS Ed faculty.
  47. 47. CS Ed today is mostly in CS Not surprising: Discipline-based Education Research usually starts in the discipline. But it can’t stay just there. • Not informed by schools and classrooms. • Doesn’t prepare teachers. • Doesn’t sustain the system.
  48. 48. What does success look like? University of Nebraska - Omaha German model UPCERG at Uppsala University
  49. 49. Getting from here to there Recognizing interdisciplinary publication venues, even if transitional. Finding ways to hire CS Ed faculty • CS Ed slots • STEM Ed slots
  50. 50. Summary and Thank Yous
  51. 51. What is Next? Bring the report back to your department and share! More copies available at computingteacher.org Connect with CSforALL to stay informed of upcoming events/announcements regarding CS education. Consider writing a grant or making a commitment for the CSforALL Summit to grow or launch a program.
  52. 52. Thank you!
  53. 53. Areas for Discussion What are our next steps? What are your concerns that we have not addressed? Lubricated by a Happy Hour, with thanks from MongoDB

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