Friday, December 21, 2012

Capacity focus, 69: A simulation and modelling based introductory Java programming course by Dan Schroeder of Weber State University

(Two Sigma/Digital learning transformation series  
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12  )

In recent days, I have found myself repeatedly revisiting and updating the Capacity Focus 16 KF post, on Java as a gateway programming language used in a first computer programming course. 

I have even made baby steps as follows, towards developing a draft AACCS course (techies wanted . . . ):

However, in that process, I have run across a very interesting Java for physics students course by Dan Schroeder at Weber State University that takes an approach that resonates deeply with what I am thinking. 

Yes, it is a lab manual for an introductory simulation course for physics students. 


It addresses realistic problems, and teaches programming concepts and approaches step by step, even, fill-in-the-blank style. Nothing wrong with that for a primer, especially if that then leads on to roll your own exercises with some help, then finally full roll your own projects.

And, voila, it begins with a Hello World, and then goes on to introduce programming and Java concepts and constructs, easing into objects and GUI stuff.

Just what the doctor ordered, except that it does not do something on controllers. Can't get everything one shot, one place!

Also, we can look at JEdit as a useful text editor, and at Dr Java as a useful student Integrated Development Environment.

So, I invite the interested to explore, as we think towards how our region can move on to digital productivity. END