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CS50 at Scale

CS50
March 24, 2017

CS50 at Scale

CS50 is Harvard University's introductory course for majors and non-majors alike, a one-semester amalgam of courses generally known as CS1 and CS2. In 2007, we set out to alter the course's style and tone to resonate with those "less comfortable" and "more comfortable" alike, albeit without sacrificing the course's historical rigor. We maintained the course's underlying syllabus but revamped every problem set, providing students not only with more direction but context as well. And we augmented the course's support structure. As of Fall 2016, CS50 is Harvard's largest course with over 700 students, up from 132 in 2006, and those "less comfortable" now compose the course's largest demographic. Since 2015 has CS50 been offered in parallel at Yale University. And CS50 also exists as CS50 AP, an adaptation for high schools that satisfies the College Board's new AP CS Principles curriculum framework.

We present in this talk what we have done and why we have done it. We also look at CS50’s online counterpart, CS50x, Harvard College's first course to be offered on an even larger scale via edX with nearly 1M registrants. And we examine CS50 AP and our vision for secondary-school education.

CS50

March 24, 2017
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  1. CS50 at Scale
    David J. Malan
    [email protected]
    University of Manchester
    24 March 2017
    https://speakerdeck.com/cs50/cs50-at-scale

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  2. 2007 CS50 at Harvard
    2012 CS50x via edX
    2015 CS50 for MBAs
    2015 CS50 at Yale
    2015 CS50 AP

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  3. • CS50
    • 700 students at Harvard College
    • 150 students at Yale College
    • 300 students at Harvard Extension
    • CS50 for MBAs
    • 100 students at Harvard Business School
    • CS50x
    • 1M+ registrants
    • Kansas City, Miami, Rhode Island, St. Louis, ...
    • Bolivia, Burma, Chile, Netherlands, UK, Ukraine, ...
    • CS50 AP
    • 150 high schools
    • 5,000 students

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  4. • CS50
    • 700 students at Harvard College
    • 150 students at Yale College
    • 300 students at Harvard Extension
    • CS50 for MBAs
    • 100 students at Harvard Business School
    • CS50x
    • 1M+ registrants
    • Kansas City, Miami, Rhode Island, St. Louis, ...
    • Bolivia, Burma, Chile, Netherlands, UK, Ukraine, ...
    • CS50 AP
    • 150 high schools
    • 5,000 students

    View full-size slide

  5. • CS50
    • 700 students at Harvard College
    • 150 students at Yale College
    • 300 students at Harvard Extension
    • CS50 for MBAs
    • 100 students at Harvard Business School
    • CS50x
    • 1M+ registrants
    • Kansas City, Miami, Rhode Island, St. Louis, ...
    • Bolivia, Burma, Chile, Netherlands, UK, Ukraine, ...
    • CS50 AP
    • 150 high schools
    • 5,000 students

    View full-size slide

  6. • CS50
    • 700 students at Harvard College
    • 150 students at Yale College
    • 300 students at Harvard Extension
    • CS50 for MBAs
    • 100 students at Harvard Business School
    • CS50x
    • 1M+ registrants
    • Kansas City, Miami, Rhode Island, St. Louis, ...
    • Bolivia, Burma, Chile, Netherlands, UK, Ukraine, ...
    • CS50 AP
    • 150 high schools
    • 5,000 students

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  7. This is CS50
    cs50.harvard.edu

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  8. Scratch
    C
    Arrays
    Algorithms
    Memory
    Data Structures
    HTTP
    Machine Learning
    Python
    SQL
    JavaScript

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  9. Scratch
    C
    Arrays
    Algorithms
    Memory
    Data Structures
    HTTP
    Machine Learning
    Python
    SQL
    JavaScript

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  10. Scratch
    C
    Arrays
    Algorithms
    Memory
    Data Structures
    HTTP
    Machine Learning
    Python
    SQL
    JavaScript

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  11. Scratch
    C
    Arrays
    Algorithms
    Memory
    Data Structures
    HTTP
    Machine Learning
    Python
    SQL
    JavaScript

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  12. 12 weeks
    8 problem sets
    1 test
    1 quiz
    1 final project

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  13. Scratch
    C
    Crypto
    Game of Fifteen
    Forensics
    Mispellings
    Sentimental
    C$50 Finance
    Mashup

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  14. Scratch
    C
    Crypto
    Game of Fifteen
    Forensics
    Mispellings
    Sentimental
    C$50 Finance
    Mashup

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  15. Scratch
    C
    Crypto
    Game of Fifteen
    Forensics
    Mispellings
    Sentimental
    C$50 Finance
    Mashup

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  16. 2-hour lecture
    90-minute section
    office hours

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  17. CS50 Puzzle Day
    CS50 Lunches
    CS50 Coding Contest
    CS50 Hackathon
    CS50 Fair

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  18. 50% problem sets
    25% test
    15% quiz
    10% final project

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  19. correctness
    design
    style

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  20. This is CS50x
    cs50.edx.org

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  21. 52 weeks
    8 problem sets
    1 final project

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  22. cs50.stackexchange.com
    cs50x.slack.com
    facebook.com/cs50

    facebook.com/groups/cs50
    reddit.com/r/cs50
    twitter.com/cs50
    ...

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  23. This is CS50 at Yale
    cs50.yale.edu

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  24. This is CS50 for MBAs
    cs50.github.io/hbs

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  25. Computational Thinking
    Programming Languages
    Algorithms, Data Structures
    Internet Technologies
    Web Design
    Cloud Computing
    Privacy, Security
    Database Design
    Web Programming
    Mobile Strategies
    Technology Stacks

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  26. This is CS50 AP
    cs50.harvard.edu/ap

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  27. 36 weeks
    ...
    2 performance tasks
    1 exam

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  28. Guidelines
    Lectures
    Notes
    Postmortems
    Problem Sets
    Seminars
    Shorts
    Slides
    Software
    Solutions
    Syllabus
    Transcripts
    Videos
    Walkthroughs

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  29. CS50 Puzzle Day in a Box
    CS50 Hackathon in a Box
    CS50 Fair in a Box

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  30. This is CS50 at scale

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  31. CS50 Appliance
    CS50 IDE atop Cloud9
    check50, submit50 atop GitHub, Travis CI
    help50, style50
    ...

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  32. accessibility
    community
    rigor

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  33. CS50x Puzzle Day
    https://www.picatic.com/cs50x-puzzle-day-2017

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  34. CS50 at Scale
    David J. Malan
    [email protected]
    University of Manchester
    24 March 2017
    https://speakerdeck.com/cs50/cs50-at-scale

    View full-size slide