skip to main content

Search for: All records

Award ID contains: 1245841

Note: When clicking on a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) number, you will be taken to an external site maintained by the publisher. Some full text articles may not yet be available without a charge during the embargo (administrative interval).
What is a DOI Number?

Some links on this page may take you to non-federal websites. Their policies may differ from this site.

  1. The NSF/IEEE-TCPP Parallel and Distributed Computing curriculum guidelines released in 2012 (PDC12) is an effort to bring more parallel computing education to early computer science courses. It has been moderately successful, with the inclusion of some PDC topics in the ACM/IEEE Computer Science curriculum guidelines in 2013 (CS13) and some coverage of topics in early CS courses in some universities in the U.S. and around the world. A reason often cited for the lack of a broader adoption is the difficulty for instructors who are not already knowledgable in PDC topics to learn how to teach those topics and alignmore »their learning objectives with early CS courses. There have been attempts at bringing textbook chapters, lecture slides, assignments, and demos to the hands of the instructors of early CS classes. However, the effort required to plow through all the available materials and figure out what is relevant to a particular class is daunting. This paper argues that classifying pedagogical materials against the CS13 guidelines and the PDC12 guidelines can provide the means necessary to reduce the burden of adoption for instructors. In this paper, we present CAR-CS, a system that can be used to categorize pedagogical materials according to well- known and established curricular guidelines and show that CAR-CS can be leveraged 1) by PDC experts to identify topics for which pedagogical material does not exist and that should be developed, 2) by instructors of early CS courses to find materials that are similar to the one that they use but that also cover PDC topics, 3) by instructors to check the topics that a course currently covers and those it does not cover.« less
  2. This workshop introduces participants to the concepts and use of BRIDGES, a software infrastructure for programming assignments in data structures and algorithms courses. BRIDGES provides two key capabilities, (1) easy to use interface to real world datasets spanning social networks, entertainment (movies on IMDB, song lyrics), scientific data (real-time USGIS Earthquake Data), civic issues (crime data), and literature (books); and (2) a visualization of the acquired data can be used in assignments by students to populate their implemented data structures, including the capability to bring out attributes of the dataset. The visualizations are displayed on the BRIDGES website and aremore »easily shared (with family, friends, peers, etc) via a weblink. Workshop attendees will engage in hands-on experience with BRIDGES and multiple datasets and will have the opportunity to discuss how BRIDGES can be used in their own courses, as well as partner with the BRIDGES team.« less
  3. Many newcomers to programming and computational thinking have been brought up on interactive, gamified learning environments. Introductory computer science courses at the university level need to dig deeper into these topics, but must do so with similarly engaging technologies and projects. To address this need, we have built a framework for a grid-based game API with event-based blocking and continuous non-blocking interfaces. The framework abstracts away much of the complexity of inputs and rendering and exposes a simple game grid similar to a 2D array indexed by rows and columns. As such, our project helps reinforce basic computing concepts (arrays,more »loops, OOP, recursion) with a customizable and engaging game interface. We have discussed the valuable influence of visual representations of student's data structures using BRIDGES in previous publications, and believe our game API can provide significance and intrigue for students in introductory courses and beyond. Our Bridges Games App website (http://bridges-games.herokuapp.com/) presents descriptions and instructions.« less
  4. In this poster we present BRIDGES, a software infrastructure for programming assignments in data structures and algorithms courses, that has been in use at multiple institutions over the past 2 years. BRIDGES was developed to engage students at the sophomore level in critical foundational courses, to improve retention and reduce attrition rates. BRIDGES provides two key capabilities: (1) easy to use interface to real world datasets spanning social networks, entertainment (movies on IMDB, song lyrics), scientific data (real-time USGIS Earthquake Data), civic issues (crime data), and literature (books); and (2) a visualization of the acquired data can be used inmore »assignments by students to populate their implemented data structures, including the capability to bring out attributes of the dataset. The visualizations are displayed on the BRIDGES website and are easily shared (with family, friends, peers, etc) via a weblink. Visitors will see several example datasets being used in data structure visualizations using BRIDGES, and see how BRIDGES can be used in their own courses, as well as partner with the BRIDGES team.« less
  5. In recent years, interactive textbooks have gained prominence in an effort to overcome student reluctance to routinely read textbooks, complete assigned homeworks, and to better engage students to keep up with lecture content. Interactive textbooks are more structured, contain smaller amounts of textual material, and integrate media and assessment content. While these are an arguable improvement over traditional methods of teaching, issues of academic integrity and engagement remain. In this work we demonstrate preliminary work on building interactive teaching modules for data structures and algorithms courses with the following characteristics, (1) the modules are highly visual and interactive, (2) trainingmore »and assessment are tightly integrated within the same module, with sufficient variability in the exercises to make it next to impossible to violate academic integrity, (3) a data logging and analytic system that provides instantaneous student feedback and assessment, and (4) an interactive visual analytic system for the instructor to see students’ performance at the individual, sub-group or class level, allowing timely intervention and support for selected students. Our modules are designed to work within the infrastructure of the OpenDSA system, which will promote rapid dissemination to an existing user base of CS educators. We demonstrate a prototype system using an example dataset.« less
  6. Although undergraduate enrollment in Computer Science has remained strong and seen substantial increases in the past decade, retention of majors remains a significant concern, particularly for students at the freshman and sophomore level that are tackling foundational courses on algorithms and data structures. In this work, we present BRIDGES, a software infrastructure designed to enable the creation of more engaging assignments in introductory data structures courses by providing students with a simplified API that allows them to populate their own data structure implementations with live, real-world, and interesting data sets, such as those from popular social networks (e.g., Twitter, Facebook).more »BRIDGES also provides the ability for students to create and explore {\em visualizations} of the execution of the data structures that they construct in their course assignments, which can promote better understanding of the data structure and its underlying algorithms; these visualizations can be easily shared via a weblink with peers, family, and instructional staff. In this paper, we present the BRIDGES system, its design, architecture and its use in our data structures course over two semesters.« less
  7. This demo introduces participants to the concepts and application of BRIDGES, a software infrastructure designed to facilitate hands-on experience for solving traditional problems in introductory computer science courses using data from real-world systems that are of interest to students, such as Facebook, Twitter, and Google Maps. BRIDGES provides access to real-world data sets for use in traditional data structures programming assignments, without requiring students to work with complex and varied APIs to acquire such data. BRIDGES also helps the students to explore and understand the use of data structures by providing each student with a visualization of operations performed onmore »the student's own implementation of a data structure. BRIDGES visualizations can be easily shared (via a weblink) with peers, friends, and family. Demo attendees will see (and possibly engage in) hands-on experience with BRIDGES and will have the opportunity to discuss how BRIDGES can be used to support various introductory computer science courses. Additionally, the demo will complement our oral presentation of our work at SIGCSE, by providing hands-on demonstrations of BRIDGES.« less