Computational Thinking

[Last updated: May 2020]

Computational Thinking: The ability to understand and apply computational concepts, practices, and perspectives. Computational concepts include concepts individuals leverage as they program (e.g., “sequencing,” or identifying a set of steps for a task; “loops,” or running the same series of steps multiple times). Computational practices represent the practices individuals cultivate while they program (e.g., “experimenting and iterating;” “reusing and remixing,” or creating something by building upon current ideas or projects). Finally, computational perspectives refer to the perspectives individuals develop about themselves, their connections to others (such as  within the context of collaborative online communities), and the technological world more broadly (e.g., “connecting,” or understanding the power of developing content both with and for others) (Brennan & Resnick, 2012).

This is a relatively nascent area for the YaM team. While we are currently not working on a concrete publication in this space, we are interested in exploring possible collaborations. Please don’t hesitate to email us if you would be interested in discussing this area further together.

Flagship publication:

  • Youth and Digital Citizenship+ (Plus): Understanding Skills for a Digital World
    • [Page 46] Provides an overview of the ways the area of computational thinking can be further incorporated into digital citizenship efforts.
    • [Pages 54-57] “Addressing the Gender Gap in Computer Science” is a case study about how formal and informal learning settings can help youth develop the knowledge and skills necessary for careers in computer science, data science, and related fields.

Forthcoming learning resources:

  • Introduction to Computational Thinking
  • Computational Thinking and Social Good
  • Computational Thinking and Gender Equality

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