Understanding Computing in a Hybrid World: On the Undergraduate Curriculum Front-End Development

Laura Benvenuti, Erik Barendsen, Gerrit Van der Veer, Johan Versendaal

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Article in proceedingAcademicpeer-review


Computing is an interdisciplinary field that can be approached from different points of view. Each point of view has its goals, aims and fundamental assumptions. This makes computing a complex discipline. Moreover, new computing disciplines appear regularly. With the trend that ICT-professionals should have non-ICT competences as well, and non-ICT-professionals should have ICT-competences, new computing curricula are often hybrid in nature. As a hybrid computing curriculum cannot cover the full range of computing, it is interesting to investigate the 'computing part' of such curricula. Our analysis framework consists of three elements: the curricular components 'goals and objectives' and 'instructional strategies', and the underlying epistemological view on the discipline ('cultural styles'). Taking a historical perspective, we describe the origins of the ACM/IEEE Curriculum Recommendation series. We discuss the three main cultural styles of computing: theoretical, scientific and engineering. Observing that in a curriculum the above elements should be aligned, we present three trade-offs for the case of hybrid computing curricula. We apply our results to two concrete examples, Liberal Arts and Computer Science and Front End Development. Based on our investigation, we formulate recommendations for designers of hybrid computing curricula. We recommend, for example, discussing disciplinary boundaries and resulting trade-offs explicitly while designing and documenting curricula.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSIGCSE '18
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 49th ACM Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education.
Place of PublicationNew York, NY
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery (ACM)
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9781450351034
ISBN (Print)9781450351034
Publication statusPublished - 21 Feb 2018
Event49th ACM Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education - Baltimore, United States
Duration: 21 Feb 201824 Feb 2018


Conference49th ACM Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education
Abbreviated titleSIGCSE'18
Country/TerritoryUnited States
Internet address


  • Cultural styles in computing
  • Front end development
  • Hybrid undergraduate curricula
  • Interdisciplinary programs (CS+X)


Dive into the research topics of 'Understanding Computing in a Hybrid World: On the Undergraduate Curriculum Front-End Development'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this