Most people acknowledge the significant roles computers play in their daily lives, but some question adding another requirement to the undergraduate course load when basic programming skills can easily be acquired outside of the classroom.
"A lot of the work I've had to do ... requires some basic HTML and CSS knowledge," says Paolo Balboa, who took basic computer science courses on his own initiative while earning his B.S. in journalism at Ohio University.
"But you can Google these kind of things now, so I think it's not totally necessary."
Georgia Tech's Isbell says the same could be said for any general education requirement, but students would miss out on the bigger picture.
"The problem with computer science ... people think it's the science of computers," Isbell says. "It's not just an application of math or engineering or science."
"The people who don't think it's important ... think that, well, all computer science is is programming alone in the basement with a bag of Cheetos, and that's the end of it. But it's not; it's a way of thinking. It's a way of viewing the world."
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