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Thantos
05-12-2004, 11:51 PM
Well I've been tutoring the structured programming class (aka C/C++) for about 6 weeks or so now. I've been noticing a common problem and that is my tutees (who knew that was a valid word) are not able to look at a problem and figure out a logical progression through it.
I have tried top-down design, bottom-up design, concurrent design, and a host of other methods to breaking the problem up into small pieces so that you only have to work on one piece at a time. All this as been for not though. The sad part is that they are not dumb.
I have noticed that the worse ones are those that came from the VB class instead of the Problem Solving / Algorithm Design class or the Pascal class. So part of me wants to blame Microsoft.

Anyone have any ideas of how to help them solve the logic problems?

Kip Neuhart
05-13-2004, 05:04 AM
Play a simple game. For every problem given, have them try to find as many unique pieces as possible. For example, to print a sequence of numbers from a file, the most obvious unique pieces would be to open the file, read from the file, and print the numbers. These pieces can be further split apart, so the game is potentially challenging on multiple levels. I think you may be going about things the wrong way by using a problem solving or implementation minded attitude. Some people will simply not think that way, so you have to look at it differently and make it more fun. You can introduce these people to bottom-up design, top-down design and the like later. For now the goal should simply be to read a problem and try to understand it thoroughly.

>So part of me wants to blame Microsoft.
Placing blame changes nothing, so why bother?

loopy
05-13-2004, 06:35 AM
>So part of me wants to blame Microsoft.
Placing blame changes nothing, so why bother?

I think he was joking. ; )

BOT~

I find myself motivated by things that interest me, or the conclusions and solutions to those problems. Maybe ask them what THEY want a computer to do, by example, that might get interest up. : )

{edit}

DrakkenKorin
05-13-2004, 07:15 AM
draw pictures!!!!





in all seriousness though, drawing pictures really helped me understand some aspects that i was having trouble coding, esp when talking about records in a file.

for instance, writing code that takes 2 files, each comprised of records that takes records n - m of file one and inserts them between records x and y in the second file.

once i started drawing the picture of what it is doing, i managed to writie the code - correctly to boot.

Thantos
05-13-2004, 08:17 AM
>So part of me wants to blame Microsoft.
Placing blame changes nothing, so why bother? Yes I was joking


find myself motivated by things that interest me, or the conclusions and solutions to those problems. The problem is that most come to me when they do not understand a homework project. Most aren't interested in programming but have to take it to fulfill a requirment for their major.


draw pictures!!!!
I'll give that a shot.

Most of the suggestions I'm gathering I won't be able to use until the fall semester (maybe summer if I get anyone to come in) so I won't be able to give feedback. Thanks for the suggestions though.

loopy
05-13-2004, 08:25 AM
>>The problem is that most come to me when they do not understand a homework project. Most aren't interested in programming but have to take it to fulfill a requirment for their major.


Do you work for the "devil"? : P