What Types of Teaching Methods Work Best With Technical Students?
Hermanson, Harold M., II
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Although the number of students in entry level Computer Science classes at Kalamazoo College has increased in the past two years) the number that continues to either ·major or minor in Computer Science has decreased. Currently there are only three students who will graduate this year majoring in Computer Science. 1 As a teaching assistant, I have noticed that students find the field of computer science interesting, but difficult to understand. The best way for students to understand the Computer Science field is to develop their analytical thinking. This thought process should be fostered by the teaching techniques used by the professo~s of their computer science classes. Since students who take Mathematics and Computer Science often have similar learning aptitUdes, the teaching methods used in these classes should highlight these areas and allow students to make connections to the material more easily. The purpose of this paper is to discuss the pros and cons of different teaching methods to understand why they may have affected the Computer Science department's enrollment. This will be done by evaluating their effectiveness in the classroom through first-hand experience and by summarizing feedback from professionals, as well as by offering suggestions on ways to increase numbers in the computer science department.