Advice on giving a python course

Martijn Faassen m.faassen at
Tue May 2 17:21:52 EDT 2000

Richard P. Muller <rpm at> wrote:
> The web page for the course is at:

> The slides for the first lecture are at:

> I wanted to give the students as much instant gratification as possible,
> which is why I introduced the Gnuplot module and NumPy in the first and
> second modules, respectively.

I like the slides, also the instant gratification bit. I should've gone
for more of that in my course, I think. That said, I tried to aim at
newbies programmers perhaps a bit more than you do, though they're all
computer people and there's some programmers there. 

My lesson notes are at:

By the way, this is an open wiki, so feel free to add comments, but don't
demolish anything. :)

Note that the assignments are in Dutch, though the notes are in English.
And if only my students actually *did* the assignments. :) Only a few
do. This course will now move into Zope, having laid some Python groundwork.

The last few lessons I've mostly been focusing on actual small programs.
I've been having a hard time explaining the concepts of object oriented
programming; there's just too much procedural programming knowledge there.

Next course I give, I think I'll try more hands-on systems to toy with from
the start. But I do like getting the concepts straight, and slowly building
them up from the beginning. Too much stuff for newbie programmers may
confuse them too much, but perhaps some overwhelming isn't bad.

Out of the 8 people who (sometimes, it fluctuates from 4 to 8 people)
participate, I think I'll manage to teach Python to only 2 or 3. 


History of the 20th Century: WW1, WW2, WW3?
No, WWW -- Could we be going in the right direction?

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