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Perl Being Taught in College?

by dru145 (Friar)
on Sep 10, 2001 at 23:37 UTC ( #111544=perlmeditation: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??


I plan on pursuing a Computer and Information Science degree from University of Maryland's online program:

Much too my delight, they are offering two Perl classes: Programming in Perl and Advanced Programming in Perl. What, no Perl Golf?

I'm really looking forward to start my degree and learning Java and C and all those other programming languages that will take me twice as long to write compared to a Perl.

Anyways, I was under the impression that Perl and College Course where two things you would never see in the same sentence. Are colleges/universities starting to see the light? Are there other schools offering Perl classes? Have any monks took a Perl class through college and what are your feelings on it?

Thanks - Dru

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
Re: Perl Being Taught in College?
by japhy (Canon) on Sep 10, 2001 at 23:58 UTC
    My college (RPI) has Perl courses, but they're often filled with FUD and cargo-cultism. The instructors don't use Perl enough to know how to explain things when they're asked questions. They don't test their code when they make assumptions about how the language works. Here are some examples:

    Q: "How do you make a 2-d array?"
    A: @x = ((1,2,3), (4,5,6))

    "Oops, I made a mistake about 2-d arrays. You need to use references. But don't worry about them, because you hardly ever need them."

    # different instructor -- she knew about references ;) sub array_cmp { my ($aref, $bref) = @_; my ($asize, $bsize) = (@$aref, @$bref); if ($asize != $bsize) { return 0; } # ... }

    Jeff[japhy]Pinyan: Perl, regex, and perl hacker.
    s++=END;++y(;-P)}y js++=;shajsj<++y(p-q)}?print:??;

(Guildenstern) Re: Perl Being Taught in College?
by Guildenstern (Deacon) on Sep 11, 2001 at 00:49 UTC
    Back when I was still an undergrad, I took several classes at CU, the Springs that taught Perl. Granted, most of the focus was on Web-based technique, but they were good classes nonetheless. Plus, they were taught by the chair of the CS department, Robert Sebesta, who's written a book or two in these areas. Of course, he wrote some questionable ones, but we'll let those slide.

    Negaterd character class uber alles!
Re: Perl Being Taught in College?
by suaveant (Parson) on Sep 11, 2001 at 00:11 UTC
    Well, I went to WPI not a bad school, I would recommend it to others... they taught almost no perl really... but that's not such a bad thing. Learning C and C++ before perl really seems to be a good idea, because much of what you learn there you can apply to perl, such as programming styles etc. And it is pretty easy to go to perl from C. I can't imagine trying to go from perl to C, however... that would have turned me blue. Also considering how well perl works with C, it's not a bad thing to know how to use. Although some perl classes could be nice, if they had good teachers...

                    - Ant
                    - Some of my best work - Fish Dinner

Re: Perl Being Taught in College?
by petral (Curate) on Sep 11, 2001 at 04:05 UTC
    I once went to an OReilly perl seminar (what can I say, it was around the corner from my house and my employer paid for it and gave me the time). Anyway, at lunch a fellow buttonholed me and kept insisting that I agree with him that Perl should be taught in his school (he was in economics at NYU). Finally, the only thing I could think of to say was: "It's sort of like music schools teaching rock and roll."
    ... But maybe things will change -- at least one school hired merlyn!

Re: Perl Being Taught in College?
by charnos (Friar) on Sep 11, 2001 at 01:57 UTC
    Unfortunately, not all tech schools (even ones with "tech" in their name) offer courses in Perl. Last quarter, I was perusing comp sci books at the book store at my school (RIT) to see what courses might be of interest, and alas, I only found one book that covered Perl. What's worse, other books required for the same course included "Beginning Windows NT Administration" as well as various web adminstration pocket references. I find it amusing how my school makes sure every prospective student knows that they are on top of current computing trends by teaching Java as the introductory language, but yet still are under the impression that Perl eq Web.
Re: Perl Being Taught in College?
by thraxil (Prior) on Sep 11, 2001 at 02:54 UTC

    Columbia has a series of 1-credit mini language courses (most regular CS classes here are 3 or 4 credits) that are designed to just teach the basics of a language. Perl is one of the languages. really basic stuff though.

    you probably won't find many colleges that offer much more than that. the CS programs at most schools are more interested in teaching theory and fundamentals than in pushing one language or another.

    anders pearson

Re: Perl Being Taught in College?
by perrin (Chancellor) on Sep 11, 2001 at 02:21 UTC
    I asked about this a couple of days ago and got some responses. See this node.
Re: Perl Being Taught in College?
by xenbo (Beadle) on Sep 11, 2001 at 03:43 UTC
    My school, IUP, doesn't offer much more than 3 sequntial courses in c++, a cobol course, asm, and java. I've asked my friends about Perl at the school, and they say that there's a modern languages course that goes over smalltalk, lisp, and Perl. I just thank god every day I'm not a comp-sci major...

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