By 2018, the United States will see a shortage of students graduating from colleges with the knowledge to develop new technology for computers, according to a computer science teacher at .
Currently, students in all grades from pre-school to high school are taught how to use computers, but few are taught how to program them, says EHS computer science teacher Carlen Blackstone.
“There needs to be a higher priority in the to prepare for the computer crisis in 2018,” says Blackstone.
She went on to say that several courses are offered to the students, but are not yet required:
- Computer Science Foundations—students learn the computer program language Alice that uses 3-D operations, or drag and drop programming.
- Programming Foundations—students are taught computer programming in visual BASIC.
- AP (Advanced Placement) Computer Science—students are taught to design web applications in the computer language Java.
- Advanced Data Structures—this is a post-AP course in Java.
- Advanced Computer Science Topics—this is an independent projects course.
- Computer Science Principles—a new AP course scheduled to be introduced in 2014.
“Somewhere, at some point, we need to require computer science courses in order to prepare for this coming crisis,” said Blackstone.
One way Blackstone is hoping to get more attention for computer science education is through a scheduled for 8 to 9 p.m. tonight at the high school. Held in honor of National Computer Science Education Week, the evening's activities, which are open to the public, will include technology demonstrations and celebrations, along with some hands-on learning for the local community.