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Indiana: Computer Science Standards

Indiana's New Science Standards Require Computer Science

The Indiana State Board of Education approved new sciences standards for K-12 students, making computer science a requirement for elementary and middle school students.

The Indiana Department of Education's (DOE) Jeremy Eltz says the biggest focus of the new standards is moving from "concrete standards," which involve reciting facts, to "literacy standards," in which students learn to think critically. For example, under the new standards sixth- through eighth-grade computer science students will learn about the relationship between hardware and software, and apply troubleshooting strategies to identify and solve routine hardware and software problems.

In addition, students will be able to describe the major components and functions of computer systems and networks, and describe what distinguishes humans from machines by focusing on the difference between human intelligence and machine intelligence.

The skills do not have to be learned in a computer science class, but can be mastered while using computer science programs in any subject, which is what the rewrite means by "literacy standards." "We want to see the computer science standards embedded in English class, math class, social studies, music, things like that," Eltz says. Going forward, the Indiana DOE will provide professional development, support, and resources to make sure the new computer science standards are met.


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