Coursera - Introduction to Systematic Program Design - Part 1 (2013)
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Being able to design simple programs is a new form of literacy. Understanding how programs work will help you
understand phones, web sites, banking systems, games, movies, social networks and many other computational systems
you interact with.
Being able to design programs will support your work as a scientist, engineer, artist and many other
professions: programming will allow you to organize, store, analyze and visualize information; create animations, music,
and online communities; control devices in our environment; develop computational models and simulations; and much
The major goal of this course is to introduce students to a systematic method for designing programs-indeed for solving
hard design problems in general. Previous students have said:
Studying computer science inspired me to think about problems differently and take a more systematic approach to
Program design is applicable not only to computer science, but numerous areas of life. It is essential in the
development of problem solving skills.
As I began to learn about programs and how they work, I started to appreciate how "simple" programs like WeiRuan-->WeiRuan
Word, especially after building my own simpler version of NotePad.
The course is designed to be interesting, accessible and useful for all -from students wanting to become expert
programmers to students with only a passing interest. No prior programming experience is assumed, and very little math
and science background is required. The course will also prepare you to learn more Computer Science skills and concepts
in the future. The course builds on the How to Design Programs (aka Program by Design) curriculum and we are grateful
to that community for their work and support.
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