Accessibility. All courses are offered online and delivered synchronously.
Convenience. Attend one evening course per semester and two summer courses, keeping teachers’ busy schedules in mind.
Ongoing Support. Virtual office hours with faculty.
Community of Practice. Join a cohort and participate in peer mentoring with in-service educators throughout the State of Illinois.
Professional Development. Acquire knowledge and skills that are core to computer science, including: computer programming, discrete mathematics, computer systems, data structures, and more.
Enhanced Marketability. Demonstrate expertise and knowledge related to technology integration and curricular design in your classroom.
Networking. Build partnerships with organizations in the greater CS education community.
With funding from the CME Group Foundation, our partners at UIUC’s College of Education conducted a comprehensive study among K-12 teachers and school and district-level administrators throughout the state on computing education.
The report uncovered data points including current CS course offerings, teachers’ qualifications, disparities in access to CS education, and perceived barriers to providing CS courses in Illinois schools. The research team, led by Dr. Raya Hegeman-Davis, notes that educators and administrators indicated the lack of trained CS teachers and the need for funding to train in-service teachers as the greatest barriers to offering CS courses in their schools.
This landscape report also highlighted the critical need for teacher certification programs, including both pre-service and in-service endorsement programs, as well as funding support for professional development for current teachers, especially in rural school districts. These and other findings establish a baseline for DPI’s goals and will be used to inform the necessity, relevance, and trajectory of our teacher-focused programming activities and funding initiatives.