Hampton University
HU Receives NSF grant for Computing Pre-College Program
05/20/2014 - #67

The Hampton University Department of Computer Science received a $397,000  grant from the National Science Foundation that will be used to equip incoming freshman students with the necessary tools to achieve in the field of computer science. 

This summer the Department of Computer Science will offer its first Computing Pre-College program. The funds will be used over the next three years for incoming freshmen computer science/ computer information systems students to sharpen their computational thinking and programing skills. 

“This grant will allow the us to reform three of our computer science gateway courses and to develop an intensive computing summer bridge program for computer science, engineering, and mathematics majors in an effort to enhance student academic performance, increase retention, and improve graduation rates, particularly for computer science students,” said Dr. Jean Muhammad, department chair and principal investigator.

This program is in response to observable enrollment and course completion data, results of academic support programs, and student surveys.

“We found that many students come into our program wanting to go into the computer science field, however they don’t have the proper skills when they come in our door,” said Muhammad. “Most high schools aren’t teaching students more than Microsoft Office Suite or a basic programming class.”  

Faculty also will employ and assess the impact of learning techniques that have been proven effective for STEM and develop future concepts relevant for Hampton and other institutions seeking to address similar problems.” –  

“This grant will strengthen the students' problem-solving and critical thinking skills by integrating computational thinking into lower-level courses. This pre-college summer program is designed to introduce our students to the prerequisite skills that they will need in this major,” said Dr.Chutima Boonthum, associate professor and co-principal investigator.

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