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Teachers offered computer training boot camp at RIC

Rhode Island College is partnering with General Assembly (GA), a global educational company, to launch an intensive computer science course for teachers this fall as part of Computer Science for Rhode Island (CS4RI), according to a press release.

This hybrid course – Introduction to Computer Programming and Web Design Boot Camp for Teachers – will be taught by GA web development instructors, and is the first time that GA has partnered with an institution of higher education to transform teacher professional learning. In-person classes will be held on the RIC campus from Friday-Sunday, Oct. 14-16, and continue through ongoing online training and mentorship.

“In our technology-driven world, computer science is becoming the new basic skill,” said Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo. “I’m thrilled that this partnership will equip Rhode Island teachers with the computer science skills they need to prepare our students for future careers and develop the next generation of creative problem-solvers.”

Teachers will be introduced to block- and text-based computer programming, front-end web design with HTML and CSS, pair programming and model lesson plans. Participants will also be provided with a variety of coding and computer science-related resources to supplement the materials and encourage further professional development. No prior computer science experience is required.

RIC Associate Professor of Computer Information Systems Lisa Bain, who collaborated with GA on course design, said that the company’s immersive approach will “give middle and high school teachers an opportunity to develop new skills in computer science and Web design, deepen their existing content knowledge and empower them to replicate workshops and best practices for teaching coding to students.”

“As a progressive leader in teacher preparation, Rhode Island College recognizes the need for computer science and digital literacy to be integral parts of every child’s education,” said Rhode Island College President Frank D. Sánchez. “This exciting partnership with General Assembly will provide Rhode Island teachers the opportunity to acquire new computer science proficiencies, ensuring that all Rhode Island students acquire the critical skills necessary to meet future workforce demands.”

“Great teachers are helping students discover new topics and fields every day,” said CEO and GA co-founder Jake Schwartz. “Our mission is to help people pursue work that they love. We believe there is no better person to help guide students in that pursuit than a teacher. That’s why we are teaming up with Rhode Island College to prepare teachers to impart the foundational skills that will ensure students are prepared to do just that.”

All course materials will be provided; however teachers will need to bring their own laptops. The course fee is $500 and billing and payment will be through RIC’s Office of the Bursar. Tuition grants for qualified teachers are available through the Office of Innovation at Rhode Island College. Those completing the course will receive 3.0 continuing education units and a RIC Certificate of Continuing Study. For additional information and registration instructions, visit www.ric.edu/RIC-CS4RI. The deadline for registration is Wednesday, Oct. 5.