How to Teach Webcraft and Programming to Free-Range Students
I will be running a P2PU course starting in January on teaching free-range learners how to program and build stuff on the web. The blurb is below; anyone who wants to can sign up to follow along or take part (we expect it will require 3-4 hours/week from mid-January to some time in April). I’m not an expert on these subjects by any means, but I’ve learned a few things from running Software Carpentry that I think are worth sharing, and hope that this course will give me a chance to learn more. (Note that I’m primarily interested in how to teach adults outside traditional classroom settings, so that will be the course’s initial focus, but its long-term direction will depend on the interests of participants.)
What do we know about how novices learn webcraft and programming, why do we believe it, and how can we apply that knowledge to free-range learners?
Right now, people all over the world are learning how to write programs and create web sites, but or every one who is doing it in a classroom there are a dozen free-range learners. This group will focus on how we, as mentors, can best help them. Topics will include:
- What does research tell us about how people learn?
- Why are the demographics of programming so unbalanced?
- What best practices in instructional design are relevant to free-range learners?
- What skills do people need in order to bake their own web?
- How are grassroots groups trying to teach these things now?
- What's working and what isn't?