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CS2013-Strawman-DS-Discrete Structures (DEPRECATED)

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sahami
CS2013-Strawman-DS-Discrete Structures (DEPRECATED)

The CS2013 Strawman Report comment period is now closed. Please see the CS2013 Ironman report for the latest CS2013 draft to comment on. Forum to comment on "DS-Discrete Structures" Knowledge Area in the CS2013 Strawman report. We ask that comments related to specific text in the report please specify the page number and line number(s) of the text being commented on. Line numbers are provided on the far left-hand side of the each page.

owensb
CSTA general comments
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I was asked by Chris Stephenson to be a liaison from CSTA to CS2013. Mehran suggested that we look at the discrete math portion and commented on how well it would interface with the CSTA Standards document. I asked Doug Baldwin of SUNY Geneseo to comment on the math portions. Here is his report:
" I guess I would say the two mesh fairly well in mathematical knowledge, but largely because there's not a lot of overlap. CSTA occasionally makes reference to "functions, sets, and logic" without really saying what sort of functions, sets, or logic they have in mind. But from the simple fact that these are K-12 standards, and statements elsewhere that the high school courses have at most high school algebra as a prerequisite, it's safe to assume that this is things like standard mathematical functions, propositional logic, etc. That kind of math touches the more elementary elements of functions, sets, and logic in CS2013. Similarly, occasional references in the CSTA standards
( http://csta.acm.org/Curriculum/sub/K12Standards.html )
to such things as binary representation of information and binary/decimal/hexadecimal representation of numbers touch on the more elementary elements of data representation in CS2013. So in terms of straight math in computer science, the CSTA standards lead right to where CS2013 picks up.

What I found more interesting is the fairly extensive references to computer modeling and simulation in the CSTA standards, which would probably prepare students rather well for the material in the "CN" (scientific computing) area of CS2013. Most of this area is elective in CS2013, and I wasn't able to tell from the CSTA standards which if any CS2013 learning outcomes would be achieved by courses based on the CSTA standards, but there is another strong connection point between CSTA and CS2013 here."
baldwin@geneseo.edu

Barbara Boucher Owens

sahami
Comment response
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We thank you for the comment and will keep the CSTA K-12 Model Curriculum in mind as we move forward.

dcdl
Feedback on KA: DS- Discrete Structures
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I have posted some comments that I believe apply to all KAs within the CS2013 Strawman Report-Chapters 1-5 thread. I would like to make reference to those comments here since they apply to all KAs.

The comments are posted under the following subjects:
First of All: Thank You.
Matching of Topics and Learning Outcomes for Core-Tier-1 and 2.
Unique Labeling or Numbering of all Topics and Learning Outcomes.
Improved Correspondence between Learning Outcomes and Topics.
Consistent Labeling for Levels of Understanding.
On the Importance of the Learning Outcomes in Core-Tier1 and 2.

Comments for this KA:

Page 57, Line 62 : I would rewrite this as: Propositional logic system interpretations and validity of wff.

Page 57, Lines 64 and 65: The Predicate Logic and Quantification topics and corresponding learning outcomes should be Elective.

Page 57, Lines 85 and 93: I would prefer DS/Proof Techniques to be moved to Core-Tier-2 with all its hours.

Page 59, Lines 122 -123 and 136 - 137: The topic of 'Recurrence Relations' is repeated in Page 36 Line 42 within the AL KA. If repeated and referenced it should be indicated in which KA the hours are to be counted.

Page 59, Lines 146 and 150: I would add 'Trees and Traversal Strategies' and change 'Traversal Strategies' to 'Graph Traversal Strategies'.

Page 59, Lines 154: I would prefer here a more elementary topic such as 'Trees and Graphs properties' rather than 'Graph isomorphism'.

alan_fekete
First-order logic belongs in core
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I disagree with dcdl's suggestion to move lines 64/65 out from the core to elective status. I think that a basic familiarity (not expertise in manipulation, but capacity to see expressions and interprete them as real-world statements, and determne truth or falsity given a model) is really part of what every CS major should have. This powerful abstraction makes so many other things clearer and more effective, it is part of the "secret sauce" that a major will bring to their career, compared to a self-trained programmer or sysadmin etc.

sahami
Comment response
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Page 57, Line 62: The topic name "Propositional logic" was deemed sufficiently descriptive and general for the intended coverage. "Validity" as a topic was updated to "Validity of well-formed formula"

Page 57, Lines 64 and 65: In agreement with the other commenter, the committee feels that predicate logic is a core topic.

Page 57, Lines 85 and 93: The committee feelsthat proof technique was an essential Tier1 topic for CS undergraduates.

Page 59, Lines 122 -123 and 136 - 137: The hours of coverage on "Recurrence Relations" in the DS KA and the AL KA are in relation to achieving the particular level of mastery for the learning outcomes in each respective KA.

Page 59, Lines 146 and 150: Graph traversal strategies are covered in the AL KA as Tier1 topics. We have added a cross-reference to make this clear.

Page 59, Lines 154: Tree properties are now added as a topic. With regard to graphs, we believe that "properties" can be too broad for our intent. Graph isomorphism is the specific property we believe should be included.

sahami
Additional comments (received via email)
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Include partial orderings (for security matters)?

Should simple aspects of reliability theory be included?

Some would say that computing now has more reliance on statistics than previously, e.g. for properly founding testing of various kinds, for reliability, for Artificial Intelligence. Should CS 2013 recognise this?

sahami
Response to comment
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Partial orders are included in DS/Sets, Relations, and Functions.

After discussion, we deemed that reliability is not a core Discrete Structures topic at this point in time.

As for statistics, the number of hours of Discrete Probability was increased from 6 hours in CS2008 to 8 hours (6 Tier1 and 2 Tier2 hours) in CS2013 to reflect the growing importance of probability and statistics in computing.

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