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Computer Science Education in the Age of CS For All

Artist's representation of computational thinking.

Computer Science Teachers Association executive director Mark Nelson says there are many unresolved issues related to the CS for All initiative.

Credit: The Huffington Post

Momentum for bringing computer science (CS) to all primary and secondary U.S. schools is building thanks to efforts such as the White House's recently unveiled CS for All initiative, but there are many unresolved issues, writes Computer Science Teachers Association executive director Mark Nelson.

Nelson cites the definition of primary/secondary CS education adopted by the U.K. Department of Education, which enables students to use computational thinking and creativity to understand and change the world. The definition also says CS education guarantees the digital literacy of students is appropriate for the future workplace and for participating in a digital world. Nelson says the U.K. definition "balances the theoretical aspects of CS with the applied dimensions," as well as "captures the broader essence of CS as something both creative and integrated with other bodies of knowledge."

Once agreement on what CS is and the need for making it available to all students is reached, Nelson notes other challenges must be met, including ensuring an abundant supply of CS educators with a diverse combination of skills and backgrounds. To this end, Nelson calls on CS for All's organizers to collaborate with teachers on addressing the CS education conundrum, and to accord U.S. educators a greater level of respect.

From The Huffington Post
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