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Call for Applications - CDER Center Seeks NSF-funded Testing Teams for CS1/CS2 course exemplars

Help Shape the Future of Computer Science Education

Are you eager to be at the forefront of innovation in Computer Science education? CS students need to graduate with a sufficient grasp of the software development process for the modern computing ecosystem, which relies on parallelism, distribution, asynchrony, scaling, integration across disparate libraries and data sources, test-driven design, and pervasive concerns for security. Funded by NSF CyberTraining award (# 2321015 ), the CDER center has taken up developing CS1 and CS2 course exemplars infused with Parallel and Distributed Computing (PDC) to serve as national templates. We're looking for six teams (1-3 persons/team) at diverse institutions to join our project by partnering with us as Testing Teams, and adopt and evaluate these modern course exemplars in their introductory computing course sequences. If accepted, you will closely work with the Development Teams to adapt the exemplars for your institution. This would be a 3-year partnership and includes a stipend of $21,000 for each testing team.

Applications will be reviewed starting April 1. For conversations, meet with us at SIGCSE'24 CDER Booth #210 in Portland, OR, next week March 21-23, or email us. More details are as follows.

Why Should A Faculty Member Participate?

By joining our project as a Testing Team, you'll enjoy the following benefits:

  • Be a Trailblazer: Contribute to a new approach that could spark revolutionary computer science education worldwide.
  • Enhance Your Expertise through Collaboration: Gain valuable training and experience working alongside the Development Teams to learn new teaching methods and incorporate these methods into your modified courses.
  • Receive Recognition: Get acknowledgment for your critical role in this transformational project. When working alongside the Development Teams, your input will be incorporated into the exemplar designs. After running your modified courses, your feedback will be instrumental in improving the exemplars and training. You will have opportunities to co-author publications.
  • Competitive Compensation: Your expertise and dedication will be rewarded.

What We’re Looking For:

  • We are looking for six institutions to form six Testing Teams to join our efforts. These teams are expected to teach their introductory CS courses (CS1 & CS2) using Java or C/C++.
  • We are looking for diverse institution types, from large and mid-size public universities with large class sizes to private liberal arts colleges with small class sizes. We encourage participation by institutions that serve underrepresented groups, including MSIs and HBCUs.
  • Teams may have varying degrees of prior Parallel & Distributed Computing (PDC) experience.

Testing Team Responsibilities:

As a member of the project’s Testing Team, you will be responsible for:

  • Collaborating with one of the two Development Teams by attending online weekly design meetings.
  • Attend in-person summer training sessions with the Development Teams (late July).
  • Modify given course exemplars to fit your institution and courses.
  • Teach your CS1 & CS2 courses with your modified course exemplars.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of new materials, technologies, and teaching methods using provided evaluation tools.
  • Provide feedback to improve the overall effort.
  • Share your experiences and insights with the team and the wider community.

How to Join the Project:

For conversation, please email with one of the project team members. If attending SIGCSE’24, see us next week at CDER booth #210 (March 21-23).


You will need the following:

  • Copies of the syllabus for the CS1 and CS2 courses at your institution.
  • A letter of support from your department chair indicating departmental commitment to participate in the project.

We will begin reviewing the applications starting April 1 but may continue to accept applications. Apply here: URL