LOS ALAMITOS, Calif., 24 April, 2012 – Mark Guzdial's innovative teaching methods at Georgia Institute of Technology have won him the IEEE Computer Society 2012 Computer Science and Engineering Undergraduate Teaching Award.
Guzdial, a professor in the School of Interactive Computing in the College of Computing, received the award "for outstanding and sustained excellence in computing education through innovative teaching, mentoring, inventive course development, and knowledge dissemination."
The award recognizes outstanding contributions to undergraduate education through both teaching and service. The award is intended to highlight the Computer Society's commitment to undergraduate education, as well as affirm its support for excellence in undergraduate education.
Guzdial is the inventor of the Media Computation approach to learning introductory computing. The approach uses contextualized computing education, where the choice of programming languages, lecture examples, and programming assignment are chosen around a particular application area. The approach has shown success in attracting and retaining students. His Media Computation course has been taught at Georgia Tech since 2003 and has shown to have an impact in retaining students in underrepresented groups, including women and minorities. The Media Computation curriculum is being used at universities across the country.
Guzdial and his students the Contextualized Support for Learning (CSL) lab study how people come to understand computing and how to make that work better. They publish frequently in computing education conferences. Guzdial has published several books (with his wife and colleague, Barbara Ericson) on the use of media as a context for learning computing. He publishes a computing education blog, which averages over 400 pageviews per day.
He received a PhD in education and computer science from the University of Michigan in 1993. He serves on the ACM Education Board and the ACM Special Interest Group on Computer Science Education Board, and is on the editorial boards of the Journal of the Learning Sciences, ACM Transactions on Computing Education, and Communications of the ACM.
Any faculty member in a degree program in computer science, computer engineering, computer information systems, or a similar program is eligible to be nominated. The award consists of a stipend of $2,000, a plaque, and certificate.