Computer Science students have access to all the general facilities in the Center for the Sciences as well as features specifically aimed at their study of computer science. The two main rooms for computer science study are the computer teaching classroom and advanced computer lab.
Computer Teaching Classroom
The computer teaching classroom was specially designed to support the types of learning we wished to support in our computer science classes. After five years of use, it underwent a substantial renovation in 2013 to improve its usage and upgrade all of the technology. Significant features of the room include:
- A wider room with only two row of tables so all students are near the teacher and projection screens.
- Semicircular shaped tables that seat four students to encourage interaction within the table (in pairs or four students) as well as allowing for reconfiguration into circles to allow groups of eight. They are also spaced apart to allow both the professor and students to easily move around the room for interaction. There are six table for a total seating capacity of 24 students.
- Two HD projectors with both VGA and HDMI connections. These allow great flexibility in what is displayed. For example, one computer can be projected on both screens for easy viewing by all or two different computers can project allowing code and other information to be projected. The room includes a high-quality document camera that can be shown via one of the projectors. The document camera can be used to write notes, shown student work written on paper, project objects (such as computer equipment), and do video capture/display. Note the aspect ratio and height from the floor of the screens means no part of the screen is close to the floor so students can easily view the full screen.
- Power and network connections are available from both floor boxes and wall connectors. The room also has wireless connection.
- While the majority of students now bring their own laptops to class, we provide laptops for those needing them.
Below are several pictures of this room taken during the cognitive robotics class.
Advanced Computer Lab
This lab is available to all computer science majors/minors via keycard access. The room includes a data projector with screen for group viewing of code, a whiteboard & blackboard, three high-end computers (Linux, Mac OS & Windows) with 30" monitors placed on semicircular tables to allow group work, four 24" monitors that are used with student's laptop, laser printer, and rack with computer science magazines. The artwork is by Beloit College students and is chosen on a rotating basis by the computer science students in the program. This room is used by students for class work and just hanging out.