AAA and CS 1 the applied apprenticeship approach to CS 1
We have developed an application-based approach to introductory courses in computer science. This approach follows an apprenticeship model of learning, where students begin by reading, studying, and extending programs written by experienced and expert programmers. Applications play a central role since programming constructs are motivated and introduced in the context of applications, not the other way around as is the tradition in most texts and courses. Under our applied approach, (1) students are able to learn from interesting real-world examples, (2) the synthesis of different programming constructs is supported using incremental examples, and (3) good design is stressed via code and concept reuse. In this paper, we provide several examples of our method as well as pointers to all the material we have developed which is freely available electronically. The philosophy underlying this method transcends a particular programming language, but we present our examples using C++ since that is the language used in the CS 1 and CS 2 courses at Duke. This method has been used with equal success using ISETL at Dickinson.