Demand for computer science education has skyrocketed in the last decade. Although challenging everywhere, scaling up CS course capacities is especially painful at small, liberal arts colleges (SLACs). SLACs tend to have few instructors, few large-capacity classrooms, and little or no dedicated IT support staff. As CS enrollment growth continues to outpace the ability to hire instructional staff, maintaining the quality of the close, nurturing learning environment that SLACs advertise-and students expect-is a major challenge.
We present Infrastructor, a workflow and collection of course scaling tools that address the needs of resource-strapped CS departments. Infrastructor removes unnecessary administrative burdens so that instructors can focus on teaching and mentoring students. Unlike a traditional learning management system (LMS), which is complex, monolithic, and usually administered by a campus-wide IT staff, instructors deploy Infrastructor themselves and can trivially tailor the software to suit their own needs. Notably, Infrastructor does not require local hardware resources or platform-specific tools. Instead, Infrastructor is built on top of version control systems. This design choice lets instructors host courses on commodity, cloud-based repositories like GitHub. Since developing Infrastructor two years ago, we have successfully deployed it in ten sections of CS courses (323 students), and over the next year, we plan to more than double its use in our CS program.
Fri 20 NovDisplayed time zone: Central Time (US & Canada) change
15:00 - 16:20
|Direct Manipulation for Computational Making
|How student avatars can contribute to a more social environment in online courses
Felix Grund University of British Columbia
|Bridging the Gap Between Programming Language Theory and Mathematics Education in Computer Science
Peter-Michael Osera Grinnell College
|Infrastructor: Flexible, No-Infrastructure Tools for Scaling CS
Dan Barowy Williams College
|Group Harmony Visualisation At Scale
|Open Discussion with the SPLASH-E Community