[plt-scheme] A data point on 'match' in intro programming: +++!

From: Matthias Felleisen (matthias at ccs.neu.edu)
Date: Wed Jul 8 02:42:16 EDT 2009

Nobody's arguing for leaving them out of the curriculum.
This is a conversation about the pedagogy of How to Design
Programs, 15 years of experience teaching freshmen at elite
and not so elite schools, and the _average_ students and the
_average_ internship or coop that they get in the first summer
or third semester. -- Matthias

P.S. Congrats to landing a CL job in the real world.

On Jul 8, 2009, at 2:34 AM, Hugh Myers wrote:

> Just to step in a moment; I'd point out that at this point I'm coding
> in lisp (admittedly CL, not scheme) on a commercial project so I'm not
> really clear on your notion about what they can use in the real world.
> After learning where the library is, the second most important thing
> students need to learn is how to 'think'. Match and 'deep' matches are
> far more likely to provide think-fuel than leaving such gems out of
> the curriculum.
> --hsm
> On Wed, Jul 8, 2009 at 12:24 AM, Matthias  
> Felleisen<matthias at ccs.neu.edu> wrote:
>> I would love to use match in introductory courses to get away from  
>> a lot of
>> details. (I introduced match into Scheme 84 in 1984.) Doing so  
>> would be a
>> great disfavor to our students. Very few of them will end up  
>> working with a
>> language that supports match, once they are on their first co-op  
>> etc. If I
>> prepare them with structures/predicates/selectors etc, they have  
>> at least a
>> chance to adapt some of what they learned in "210" to their work.  
>> If we had
>> showed them match and even 'deep' matches, it would just be one  
>> more large
>> conflict between this silly, design-recipe FP stuff and their real  
>> world. --
>> Matthias
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