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Apple Provides High School Teachers With Free Tools to Teach Programming

Apple Provides High School Teachers With Free Tools to Teach Programming

Apple revealed in this year's WWDC conference that a course to teach students the Swift programming language used in Apple's iOS operating system will be available for free through iTunes U.

The course, titled "Teaching App Development with Swift for High School Instructors," "will prevent teachers from having to reinvent the pedagogical wheel and provide standardization in Swift programming instruction, which will benefit the entire developer community," according to AppleInsider.com.

The course will provide lesson plans, projects files, and GitHub sample code to give educators and students a leg up an opportunity to learn the best programming practices for development for no cost.

"Reflecting the most successful trends in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education today, this course has been designed around a pedagogical method known as 'project-based learning.' The curriculum is divided into five levels of instruction, with each aimed at a different and specific learning outcome," AppleInsider said.

In other words, each level of instruction has specific projects for students to complete to indicate they have mastered the level's goals. The course has a total of ten learning outcomes students are intended to learn through project mastery.

Also, the course is aligned to several College Board AP Computer Science standards, allowing for it to be part of the growing number of schools that offer the AP class.

There are some stipulations for educators looking to teach the course in their classroom, however. Educators must have some familiarity with the basics behind iOS and students must have some background with programming. This is why the course is recommended for advanced high school students.

"Apple's course assumes that the teacher is familiar with building basic iOS apps and is comfortable with Swift. It also assumes that students have had some experience with object-oriented programming, such as Java, Python, or C++. Students are not, however, required to have prior experience with Swift," the article said.

Many educators and programmers support the move and are excited about Apple's reinvigorated commitment to student education.

Read the full article here and make sure to take our poll below. 

Article by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor

06/29/2015

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