Even before the first day of CS 120, I knew it was going to be a challenging course. Our class meets three times a week for two hours; therefore we have learned quite a bit of information. Some of the main categories we have covered include: decomposition, abstraction, modularity, data structures, variables, the Program Development Cycle, IPO charts, the Von Newman Structure, loops, if statements, passes and the basics of using Visual Studio. Ralph told our class that he is doing a few things differently than he ever has done before in class. One of those things is that he is covering a lot of information at the beginning, and then we will go over each topic in more detail as the semester continues. Also, we must use cloud computing. Each student in CS 120 now has a Twitter, Linked In, Dropbox, and Windows Live account. We have also been assigned two group projects that will be due much later in the semester. The first project is a video presentation of an interview with an IT professional. The second project is a review of the code of ethics for IEEE, ACM, and two others of our choice. Once we have written a review for the codes of ethics, we will create our own and present this to our class. We were given our first programming assignment this week, an experiment assignment, and the first part of our first exam is due next Friday, February 17th.
In CS 120 I have learned that attendance and keeping up with the reading is crucial. I have also learned the importance of keeping a planner. This semester I have had nearly every hour planned out Monday through Friday. Even though CS 120 has felt overwhelming at points, I have actually enjoyed the class. Programming is a tough subject to make interesting (especially for six hours a week), but Ralph does a very good job of making this class as intriguing as he can. Larry has also worked with the class on using an IPO chart, and it has shown us how we will be using this information in our future for business purposes. For the first time in my college career, I am learning a subject that is making me stand out from many of the other students on campus and also one that is vital to my future. When I talk to my father, an IT professional, he is amazed at the amount of information that I have learned, and actually understand, about a month into the semester. Although MIS will not be an easy major, I know it will be worth it. I am relieved that there are so many students that have already been through these courses that are willing to help. I am excited to see what the future has in store for my classmates and me.
-Kiersten Mace, MIS student