How to Know If a Computer Science Department is on the Cutting Edge of Technology
- Large Tables
- Whiteboards or Smart Boards
- Flexible Displays or Combination Monitors and Drafting Boards
- High-speed Graphics Cards
- Multi-use Spaces
Many colleges and universities offer a computer science major, and these five facilities and equipment in a cutting-edge computer science department are essential to the learning and innovation of the students and staff. Each college’s or university’s computer science department will have different levels of funding and different numbers of students, so their priorities may also differ somewhat in terms of how and where they choose to invest their money for equipment and facilities. These are five types of items or facilities that showcase a college’s or university’s commitment to ensuring that its computer science department is at the forefront of technology.
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1. Large Tables
Although large tables might seem like a low-tech addition to a cutting-edge computer science department, they are essential. These pieces of equipment facilitate collaboration. They allow students, teaching assistants and professors to lay out a complex design. They also facilitate lectures and meetings in which students can learn from tech experts and each other.
2. Whiteboards or Smart Boards
Whiteboards or smartboards are another key investment that a university or college should make in order to maintain a cutting-edge computer science department. These boards allow students to write out ideas and code. They also allow teaching assistants, lecturers and professors to illustrate a concept. When there are whiteboards or smartboards on multiple walls of a multi-use meeting space, a large design or schematic can be laid out in a step-by-step manner. Computer science departments should also consider investing in some table-size smart boards or whiteboards that students can use when working in pairs.
3. Flexible Displays or Combination Monitors and Drafting Boards
Another type of equipment that a computer science department should invest in is a flexible display, combination monitor or digital drafting board. A large digital display with touchscreen capability allows students to interact with what they program. These displays also allow the students to zoom in and get to the fine details of an image. Flexible displays are also useful to students who visit the computer lab in order to create detailed blueprints or schematics of a design. This equipment also facilitates the exploration of three-dimensional images.
4. High-speed Graphics Cards
High-speed graphics cards are essential for the computers set up in a computer science department’s computer lab. Most programming activities focus on creating animated effects or other graphics that require a lot of power. When the computers are set up with top-of-the-line graphics cards, students will be able to see the fruits of their efforts. High-speed graphics cards are also key to programming games and setting up apps.
5. Multi-use Spaces
According to Campus Technology, another facility component of a cutting-edge computer science department is a multi-use space. This space could be used for collaborative projects, teaching and networking opportunities between undergraduates, graduates, and alumni. It could also be used for office hours of teaching assistants, individual work and overflow space when the main computer lab is at capacity.
Every college or university has limited funds to allocate to its departments. The department managers are responsible for prioritizing equipment, supplies and facilities upgrades in order to best serve their faculty, staff, and students. Each of these five facilities and equipment in a cutting-edge computer science department is important to the learning process.