The CU Denver College of Engineering, Design and Computing piloted a new first-year computing course designed for undergraduate engineering students in fall 2019. The course comes out of the college’s vision to transform engineering education by integrating modern computational thinking and cutting-edge technology across engineering disciplines. The pilot course was offered by Inworks and taught by Inworks director and professor of computer science John Bennett.
The new first-year computing course provides a broad introduction to the technological underpinnings of modern society, introducing the fundamental principles and algorithms underlying computer programming. Computer programming concepts were taught using primarily the Python programming language. Students progressed through increasingly complex laboratory exercises where they worked with data, created generative visualizations and created hybrid digital/physical objects. Students spent the last three weeks of the course working on a capstone project. Student teams produced final projects that utilized Arduino programming to control and coordinate lights with music, encrypted and decrypted messages by various methods and enabled users to interact with a story to change its outcome.
The college is offering the course again in spring 2020, and hopes to eventually make it part of every engineering student’s first-year experience.
At the CU Denver College of Engineering, Design and Computing, we focus on providing our students with a comprehensive engineering education at the undergraduate, graduate and professional level. Faculty conduct research that spans our five disciplines of civil, electrical and mechanical engineering, bioengineering, and computer science and engineering. The college collaborates with industry from around the state; our laboratories and research opportunities give students the hands-on experience they need to excel in the professional world.