strategic priority
Technology & Innovation
PERIOD
August 2016 - April 2020
BUDGET
$301,150
RAF'S CONTRIBUTION
$265,000
+60%
of reached students
expected to acquire the desired computer science competencies relevant for their age
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The program pilots an intervention aimed at supporting computer science teachers to adopt project-based teaching strategies for their class and to create active-learning environments in their schools.

CONTEXT

For a growing economy with trans-disciplinary innovation to thrive, professionals need to have a good understanding of technology and a sound ability to follow through an idea to transform it into an internationally competitive product. This is why the formal educational system needs to start building the new required set of skills as early as possible, before students make their career choice at the end of high school: basic computational thinking and coding, a mindset where the individual is able to plan, implement, evaluate, integrate feedback and soft skills like teamwork and open collaboration. Expanding the use of project-based learning in Computer Science classes may contribute to this objective.

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STRATEGY

In order to serve the expanding IT market in Romania, a good pool of professionals is mandatory. This requires a good pipeline of students willing to follow an educational and career path in technology. If Computer Science (CS) classes become more attractive and updated and students meet role models from industry, as proposed in the program, we expect to see more students interested by the tech field.

Some of the skills required by the product-development business model in the IT industry should be fostered from young ages by teachers capable to stimulate the creativity and higher order thinking of students (critical thinking, problem solving etc.). Techsoup will localize a course designed by the Cambridge University to serve exactly these educational objectives.

Expected results:

  • Increased understanding of Asociația TechSoup on how to mobilize Computer Science teachers and other stakeholders to promote the project-based learning;
  • Computer Science teachers improve their teaching practice by including project-based learning in their methodology and become effective promoters of project-based learning for peers in their schools and counties;
  • More than 800 high-school students improve their Computer Science knowledge and skills using project-based learning;
  • IT business sector becomes involved in the program and more aware of the needs and potential of Computer Science education in high-schools.
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