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Computer Science Degree: Possibly Useless
17 October 2011 @ 14:11 BST
by Paul

An educational institution wrote to me recently asking me to finish my degree. I ordered the prospectus and looked through the courses that passed themselves off as computer science. Very little of it was science and rest was even less about computers. In fact, I can know more and get better information by reading the right books and blogs.

It was interesting to see that others have a similar take on computer science education:

When I started college, it was as a computer science major. I thought I would use college mostly as a convenient way to learn some programming languages and strategies so I could get a degree and a job in the field. But I arrived already burnt out and ended up switching out after a semester, for two very different reasons.
The first is the state of technology today. We don’t deal with the machine; we don’t even deal with abstractions on top of the machine. We deal with layers of abstractions, layers piled so high you can’t even see where they end.
The other reason, of course, is that technology education is bullshit. I can pinpoint exactly the moment of my burnout: it was when, as a sophomore in high school, I used the conditional operator in a program for my AP Computer Science class and got marked down...

The school that asked me to complete my degree wants more students. To get them, it has dumbed its courses so that they appeal to any half-wit on the Interwebs with a pulse. The question for me is whether it's worth my time and money.




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