STEM

U California Davis Launches Computer Science Curriculum for Grades 1-12

The Center for Integrated Computing and STEM Education (C-STEM Center) at the University of California Davis has unveiled a computer science curriculum for use in grades 1-12 across the United States.

The curriculum, the C-STEM Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) Pathway, is currently in use in 200 California schools and  integrates computer programming into math with an emphasis on algebra, eliminating the need for computer science to displace other courses while allowing districts to pursue President Obama's goal of Computer Science for All.

"As a result," according to a news release, "students on the C-STEM ICT Pathway are exposed to coding in Blockly and C/C++ for 12 years, woven together with math, science, engineering and even artistic projects such as video production."

"You don't learn English once in one year of school, so why should we teach the language of computers that way," asked Harry Cheng, C-STEM director and professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, in a prepared statement. "Students can revisit it several times."

The center offers two-day and week-long professional development options, geared to teachers with no programming or robotics experience, for schools adopting the curriculum. The center also offers a Train-the-Trainer Affiliate Program, which "allows district and county office of education staff, experienced teachers and college and university faculty to become certified C-STEM trainers who can hold C-STEM professional development for teachers in their district, county or geographic area," according to information released by UC Davis.

C-STEM ICT Pathways joins the center's C-STEM Studio and RoboBlockly, among many other programs focused on STEM equity and education. More information about the C-STEM Center is available at c-stem.ucdavis.edu. More information about the new curriculum is also available on the center's site.

About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at jbolkan@gmail.com.

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