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Board # 77 : Helping Faculty & Students to Participate in Humanitarian Free & Open Source Software: The OpenFE & OpenPath Projects

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Conference

2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Columbus, Ohio

Publication Date

June 24, 2017

Start Date

June 24, 2017

End Date

June 28, 2017

Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Tagged Topic

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count

9

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/27923

Download Count

44

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Paper Authors

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Clifton L Kussmaul Muhlenberg College

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Clif Kussmaul is Associate Professor of Computer Science at Muhlenberg College. Previously, he was Visiting Fulbright-Nehru Scholar at the University of Kerala, Chief Technology Officer for Elegance Technologies, Inc., Senior Member of Technical Staff with NeST Technologies, and Assistant Professor of CS at Moravian College. He has a PhD in Computer Science from the University of California, Davis, master's degrees in CS and Electro-acoustic Music from Dartmouth College, and bachelor's degrees in Engineering and Music from Swarthmore College. His professional interests and activities include active and guided inquiry learning, software engineering, entrepreneurship, digital signal processing, cognitive neuroscience, and music.

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Heidi Ellis Western New England University

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Heidi Ellis is a Professor in the Computer Science and Information Technology department at Western New England University. Dr. Ellis has a long-time interest in software engineering education and has been interested in student participation in Humanitarian Free and Open Source Software (HFOSS) since 2006.

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Gregory W Hislop Drexel University (Eng. & Eng. Tech.)

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Gregory Hislop is a Professor and Senior Associate Dean in the College of Computing and Informatics at Drexel University. His scholarly interests span computing education research, information technology for teaching and learning, and software engineering. Prior to coming to Drexel, Dr. Hislop spent 18 years working in government and industry, where his efforts included software development and support, technology planning and evaluation, and development and delivery of technical education.

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Lori Postner Nassau Community College

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Darci Burdge Nassau Community College

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Darci Burdge is Assistant Chair and Professor of Computer Science at Nassau Community College. She has worked to increase students understanding of software development and the impact it can have on society. She is especially interested in broadening the perspective of the introductory Computer Science student beyond the programming concepts typically taught in these courses. She uses HFOSS projects as a means to providing real-world experience and finds that students are motivated, showing increased participation in classroom discussion especially among women. She is Co-PI on an NSF-funded project to assist faculty who are interested in involving students in HFOSS projects.

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Abstract

Students in computer science, software engineering, and related disciplines must master a broad range of technical knowledge, skills, tools, and processes. They must also learn to navigate, understand, and contribute to real-world code, documentation, and diverse communities of developers, users, and other stakeholders. One effective way for students to develop such knowledge, skills, and attitudes is to participate in Humanitarian Free & Open Source Software (HFOSS) projects. Research has shown that student participation in HFOSS projects has a positive impact on student motivation to study computing and a strong positive impact on perceived learning related to software engineering [8, 19]. The OpenFE and OpenPath projects seek to help faculty and students participate in HFOSS projects and communities.

The 2012 NSF TUES OpenFE Project developed and expanded faculty expertise supporting student involvement in HFOSS projects, and created and evaluated learning materials to help students in a variety of settings, including community colleges. OpenFE significantly revised and enhanced the Professors Open Source Software Experience (POSSE), a faculty development program originally developed by Red Hat, Inc. OpenFE also helped faculty to develop, pilot, and disseminate a variety of learning materials [10].

The 2015 NSF IUSE OpenPath Project continues and expands this work with a focus on sequences (pathways) of topics and learning activities that can be integrated across the curriculum to provide faculty and students with a more gradual introduction to FOSS tools and practices. OpenPath also leverages Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning (POGIL) [20, 29] to help students develop skills in communication, critical thinking, problem solving, and teamwork, which will make them more successful participants in HFOSS [5].

Together, the OpenFE and OpenPath projects have supported over 90 faculty from over 65 institutions to participate in POSSE and explore ways to help their students participate in HFOSS projects. A website (http://foss2serve.org) has more information about OpenFE and OpenPath, POSSE and other events, and learning materials.

Kussmaul, C. L., & Ellis, H., & Hislop, G. W., & Postner, L., & Burdge, D. (2017, June), Board # 77 : Helping Faculty & Students to Participate in Humanitarian Free & Open Source Software: The OpenFE & OpenPath Projects Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. https://peer.asee.org/27923

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