There is lots of work on computing at school in other countries. This page gathers links to them.
Created by Simon Peyton Jones
last edited Dec 12 2020 by Simon Peyton Jones
Standards and curricula
This section contains links to documents that specify/codify a computing curriculum. See below for national reports, curricular support materials, and so on.
June 2017: draft framework for New Zealand’s digital technologies curriculum
Oct 2016: USA K-12 Computer Science Framework. This is a major, multi-stakeholder USA-based effort to develop a framework for K-12 CS. It’s a very substantial and thoughtful piece of work. CAS members will find lots of useful material in the Framework, a way to think about our subject. Here’s my CAS post about it.
2015: The new Australian National Curriculum in Digital Technologies. Plenty about data types, algorithms, networks, etc.
Dec 2013 ACM/IEEE joint report: Computer Science 2013: Curriculum Guidelines for Undergraduate Programs in Computer Science. It’s university focused of course, but it’s a thoughtful, up-to-date statement of what ACM/IEEE think should be in an undergraduate CS degree.
2011: CSTA K-12 Computer Science Standards. A USA-based vision for computing at school, not just a boring standards document. Also contains 30+ pages of “sample classroom activities”.
Draft curriculum standards in Computer Science and Digital Literacy for Massachusetts.
Arkansas standards for computing K-8
Overviews and reports
Google Education have a great collection of reports and insights..
2020: 2020 state of computer science education: illuminating disparities is a state-of-the-nation report about computing education in the USA. “This report shows that less than half of all high schools in the U.S. teach CS, with access being lowest for students from rural areas, economically disadvantaged backgrounds, and marginalized racial and ethnic groups underrepresented in computer science. While diversity within classrooms has increased, it’s clear that work is still far from done.”
Feb 2018: Pre-College Computer Science Education: A Survey of the Field, by Paulo Blikstein of Stanford. It’s very good, albeit a bit USA-centric; Mark Guzdial recommends it strongly.
Jan 2017: Generation CS: CS Undergraduate Enrollments Surge Since 2006, Computing Research Association. Across the United States and Canada, universities and colleges are facing a significant increase in enrollment in both undergraduate computer science (CS) courses and programs. The current enrollment surge has exceeded previous CS booms, and there is a general sense that the current growth in enrollment is substantially different than that of the mid-1980s and late 1990s. To investigate the current situation, the Computing Research Association (CRA) produced an enrollment survey to measure, assess, and better understand enrollment trends and their impact on computer science units, diversity, and more. Part of this effort included a survey of doctoral- and non-doctoral granting academic units in fall 2015. We report the survey results with respect to majors, nonmajors, diversity, impact on academic units, and units’ actions in response to the surge.
Dec 2016: Developing Computational Thinking in Compulsory Education. This is a Europe-wide survey report, with quite a lot of per-country information.
May 2016: The case for improving US Computer Science Education, Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF). This report is massively supportive of the approach we are taking in the UK. “To maintain the field’s current momentum, the perception of computer science (CS) needs to shift from its being considered a fringe, elective offering or a skills-based course designed to teach basic computer literacy or coding alone. Instead, it is time for CS to be seen as a core science on par with more traditional high school offerings such as biology, chemistry and physics.”, and “The ideal course in computer science is a lot more advanced than either computer literacy or coding. Rather, the best courses focus on underlying scientific principles, give students experience with thinking logically through abstractions, and communicate fundamental knowledge of how software and computing work. These classes introduce topics such as algorithms, programming paradigms, and data structures; they teach students how to think logically through problems, debug code, and apply knowledge to real world projects.”
April 2016: A Decade of ACM Efforts Contribute to Computer Science for All - good overview of the progress made towards the CS for All initiative.
Jan 2016: Summary of President Obama’s USA initiative: Computer Science For All. “Computer Science for All is the President’s bold new initiative to empower all American students from kindergarten through high school to learn computer science and be equipped with the computational thinking skills they need to be creators in the digital economy, not just consumers, and to be active citizens in our technology-driven world.” Comes with $4billion funding!
Google-Gallup research report: Perceptions of computer science reflect and reinforce stereotypes, 2015. This report explores participation in and perceptions of CS learning by gender, race and income, in the USA. CAS discussion thread.
Computing and digital literacy: call for a holistic approach, a short 5-page report from the EDCL Foundation, October 2015.
Searching for Computer Science: Access and Barriers in U.S. K-12 Education, a Google report, 2015. Accompanying blog post.
Computing our future: Priorities, School Curricula and Initiatives across Europe, a report of European Schoolnet, Oct 2014. Revised edition, October 2015.
Computer Science Degree Programs and majors: A guide from USA which looks at computer science education and dissects degree programs and coursework at all academic levels. It then delves into CS on the cutting edge, with profiles of degree options that tap into new tools, ideas and specializations.
2014 Computing in Schools: A Call for Action from Informatics Societies, a report of the Council of European Professional Informatics Societies (CEPIS). Mentions CAS explicitly.
May 2013 Teaching computer science in France: tomorrow can’t wait. This report (in English translation), from the French Academy of Sciences, recommends the adoption of Computer Science as a fundamental subject in the French school curriculum, from primary school onwards.
Apr 2013 Informatics education: Europe cannot afford to miss the boat Report of the joint Informatics Europe & ACM Europe Working Group on Informatics Education. Here “informatics” is (roughly) Euro-speak for “computer science”. Recommendation 2. All students should benefit from education in informatics as an independent scientific subject, studied both for its intrinsic intellectual and educational value and for its applications to other disciplines.
A National Talent Strategy – Ideas for Securing U.S. Competitiveness and Economic Growth, a 2012 Microsoft white paper making the case for Computer Science at school; Brad Smith’s blog post on the day he made a policy speech at the Brookings Institute.
International comparisons of computing at school, Nfer 2011, a report commissoined by the Royal Society
Running on empty is the CSTA’s report on the state of play in the USA (2010)
Blogs and news
2014 Support for Finnish schools preparing for their new national curriculum in 2016, which includes programming from primary school onwards.
Feb 2013 The code.org site was launched. Lots of programming resources, motivational videos etc.
New Zealand Association for Computing, Digital and Information Technology Teachers. A terrific, curated collection of resources to teach CS.
The beauty and joy of computer science, a course offered by UC Berkeley for non-conputer-science majors. Teaches programming using Scratch/BYOB. “But this course is far more than just learning to program. We’ll focus on some of the “Big Ideas” of computing, such as abstraction, design, recursion, concurrency, simulations, and the limits of computation. We’ll show some beautiful applications of computing that have changed the world, talk about the history of computing, and where it will go in the future. Throughout the course, relevance will be emphasized: relevance to the student and to society”.
Exploring Computer Science: a major initiatve based at UCLA
International Baccalaureate subject outline for Information Technology in a Global Society contains a useful discussion of that subject compared to Computer Science.
Nov 2010: US Computer Science Principles AP Course (under development)
Being fluent with information technology, and accompanying University of Washington course. An old report (1999), but written by a heavyweight USA committee, with an interesting discussion of digital literacy and digital fluency. (Despite first impressions, the report can be downloaded for free.)
#codingcounts Report on coding and robotics as part of the curriculum for Queensland schools.
Recent international research on CS in school