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Computer Science Department

Pilot Section of Computer Science One Taught with Robots (Fall, 2011)


As reported on the DePauw University web site three sections of Computer Science 1 (CS1) are offered each semester, but one section this semester includes a lively addition to the curriculum – an intelligent mechanical agent or robot. Professor of Computer Science Douglas “Doug” Harms is teaching the pilot course.

Harms says “In class we start by giving simple instructions to the robots, and then move on to sequencing, making decisions, repetition and other CS concepts,” Harms says. “For example, if there is something in front of the robot, then the student has to instruct it what to do. In a traditional computer science class, the decisions being made are about things happening on the screen, but in the lab with the robots, they are in the context of how you can direct the robot.”

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