History class as a vehicle for learning computer science

By | September 18, 2020
Prof. Mark Guzdial
Prof. Mark Guzdial (College of Engineering)

Mark Guzdial, professor in computer science, wants more people to have access to the power of programming, so he has proposed a new way to engage high school students: integrate the use of purpose-built computer science tools that include programming into history courses. Under a new grant from the National Science Foundation, Guzdial is working with high school social studies teachers this fall to realize this vision.

He is collaborating with Michigan alumnus Tamara Shreiner at Grand Valley State who teaches data literacy to future social studies educators. He provides the tools to Shreiner’s curriculum. “This project is being built into new, interactive course materials that will allow students to build data visualizations in history classes as part of an inquiry process. We use programs to capture the students’ process as they investigate historical questions,” says Guzdial.