The silent C in STEM

Miles Berry, Andrew Paul Csizmadia

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Computer science owes its very foundation to mathematics: 2016 marks the 80th anniversary of Turing's paper on computable numbers, with an application to the Entscheidungsproblem, and historically there have been very strong connections between these two domains. In England's new (2014) national curriculum, these connections are made apparent to primary and secondary pupils through an emphasis on mathematical reasoning in the mathematics curriculum and the 'golden thread' of computational thinking which runs throughout the computing curriculum. We explore how themes such as abstraction, algorithms, decomposition, generalisation and logical reasoning can be applied to solve problems in both domains.
Much of modern mathematics draws extensively on computation, and we discuss some ways in which computer software, and in particular programming in languages such as Scratch, Snap! or Python can be used to enhance and enrich learning in mathematics. We look too at the mathematical requirements of England's computing curriculum and consider how these can be addressed through 'unplugged' and computer-based pedagogies.
We conclude with a discussion of some of the ways in which the UK computing subject
association, Computing At School, has supported the implementation of the curriculum, covering initiatives such as the Network of Excellence, Barefoot Computing and Tenderfoot Computing.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 22 Dec 2016
EventWhat is the position of
mathematics and informatics
education in a coherent STEM
curriculum?: CIDREE STEM meeting
- SLO, Utrecht, Netherlands
Duration: 22 Nov 201623 Nov 2016


SeminarWhat is the position of
mathematics and informatics
education in a coherent STEM
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