The Web Curriculum

By Deane Barker on July 15, 2009

The Web Curriculum: I love Tim Bray’s idea for a Web-centric college curriculum.

I propose that the World Wide Web would serve well as a framework for structuring much of the academic Computer Science curriculum. A study of the theory and practice of the Web’s technologies would traverse many key areas of our discipline.

I’ve long-maintained that a CS degree doesn’t prepare people as well as it could to work on the Web (if that’s where they want to end up).  I’ve interviewed several people with CS degrees that just had no concept of what working on the Web meant or the skills they needed.  We almost need a CS degree with an emphasis on Web technologies.

Tim proposes courses like:

  • Web 101: Architectural Introduction · Core idea: Teach what happens when you click on a link and a page with some multimedia and personalization is rendered for you.
  • Web 230: User Interfaces · Core idea: Survey UI issues, but assuming the browser as a delivery platform, to put the focus on the content not the technology.
  • Web 340/440: Persistence · Core idea: Study the issues surrounding persistent storage of data
  • Web 470: Issues in Large Distributed Systems · Core idea: Study problems that arise in systems much too large for a single computer.

There are quite a few more behind the link.