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  • Physical computing for CS education

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Physical computing: A key element of modern computer science education

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

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<mark>Journal publication date</mark>1/04/2020
<mark>Journal</mark>IEEE Computer
Issue number4
Volume53
Number of pages11
Pages (from-to)20-30
Publication statusPublished
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Policymakers and educators around the globe acknowledge the importance of computer science (CS) education. But traditional CS teaching tools and methodologies do not necessarily address the needs of a diverse, global student population or the latest developments in modern programming and data science. Physical computing – combining software and hardware to build interactive physical systems that sense and respond to the real world – has been shown to result in broad engagement across a spectrum of users. In this paper we review prior research into physical computing in the classroom and combine this with our own experiences. We summarise the reported benefits and show how recent trends in the design and implementation of physical computing devices and systems are resulting in growing adoption. By way of example, we provide a detailed description of a recently developed physical computing system, the BBC micro:bit.

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©2019 IEEE. Personal use of this material is permitted. However, permission to reprint/republish this material for advertising or promotional purposes or for creating new collective works for resale or redistribution to servers or lists, or to reuse any copyrighted component of this work in other works must be obtained from the IEEE.