Guidelines for student presentations in the Computer Science Principles class

Presentations should include a short article or a video for your peers to study during class. Do not stress about this, but if you do find something interesting for your presentation, please send me an email so I can put it online before class. It will save some time during class.

After people have read the article/watched video, there is no point reciting what they have just read. Instead, ask if anyone has thoughts about the article. If you are not sure what to ask, there is a list of possible questions, below. (1) and (2) are good places to start.

Presentations should be about computing-related stuff. There are so many choices and you can't really go wrong. See a new gadget reported in the news? Perfect. Want a discussion about a computer game? Fine. Learn about an invention that relates to computer? Awesome.

Here are some questions that I think are important to consider when reading tech articles of any kind.

  1. What is this article about? What are the main points the author is trying to convey?
  2. What is this article REALLY about? What is hidden, but important? (Example: Google Now is a product that helps people by giving them advice before they ask for it. Google Now requires information about a person to do this.)
  3. If money is involved, can it be followed? Who stands to gain from it?
  4. Are there security issues involved? What are the implications?
  5. Are there privacy issues involved? What information is being shared by a consumer? How is that information being used? Are there downsides to this?
  6. Are there legal issues? Who owns the rights to the bits? Who is helped or harmed based on the law?

The first two questions will almost always be relevant. The others depend on the nature of the article. You can probably come up with questions as good or better than these because (a) you're smart and creative and can just do that and (b) your teacher is not a social studies teacher and is trying to figure out how to be one. Don't be afraid to ask other students questions you think are important!

Note that the guidelines are subject to change and improvement. If you have ideas on how to improve them, please let me know!