For architectural educators, a challenge of teaching digital design is maintaining a relevant curriculum amidst an increasing array of constantly evolving software and tools. This paper describes a curriculum proposal under review at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, which attempts to address this situation through the integration of computational thinking in studios and seminars.
Computational thinking is a developing area of study that originates from the discipline of computer science. Researchers define it as the ability to leverage the strengths of computing in order to study and solve problems. Whereas most digital design education is narrowly focused on the acquisition and application of a limited set of software commands and techniques, computational thinking is concerned with the fundamental concepts at the heart of every piece of computational software and hardware. In future testing, we hope to demonstrate that a more holistic mindset, rooted in these first principles, can assist students with understanding and making effective use of any form of computing they may encounter— now or in the future.
Nicholas Senske, firstname.lastname@example.org, University of North Carolina at Charlotte