Introductory Computer Science @ Harvey Mudd College

In 2005, we perceived a need to update our traditional Java-based CS1 course.  Our goals were to design an introductory curriculum that would (1) develop programming and problem-solving skills useful across engineering, mathematics, and the natural sciences, (2) attract (a more diverse group of) students to continue with CS, and (3) provide a coherent, intellectually compelling picture of CS, even as final CS course.

This page provides information about our new CS1 course, nicknamed CS for Scientists, as well as about other our other efforts to develop engaging introductory CS curriculum.

This material is based in part upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. CNS-0939149. It is part of our CPATH project entitled "Modular CS1 from the inside out."  A summary of this project can be found here

Related Publications

Resources for Instructors and Course web pages

We are also working with several partner schools to co-develop an adapted version of our CS1 course.  As these courses are run, we will post links to courses pages  below.  For now we provide general links to each partner school.
We will more information specific to this project as it develops.


The intro CS team at HMC is led by Christine Alvarado (, Zach Dodds (, Geoff Kuenning (, and Ran Libeskind-Hadas ( Please feel free to contact any of us with questions.