CSCI 2830-810 and CSCI 4830-810

Development Center:  Technology for the Community

This course meets T, Th 5-6:15 only.
There is no separate W lab section as originally stated.

The Development Center is a new long-term projects course. In it, we will develop computational products designed to serve the needs of local community service organizations. Project ideas will be generated in a community brainstorming workshop held early in the semester and facilitated by the Institute for Women and Technology.

In this course, we will learn to use software tools for  such computational tasks as composing and editing websites, maintaining and manipulating databases, creating CD-ROMs, and (possibly) editing film. We'll study the process of turning an idea into a useful software product. We'll also read about and discuss the impact of technology on the community at large.

Projects are likely to be multimedia in nature, so there is need for students with a broad range of interests and skills. Students with capabilities in such areas as design, art, writing, and social science should find natural roles in the projects, as should students with strong computational skills. Students will work in interdisciplinary teams to complete the projects

Philosophy and Prerequisites

This course is based on new and developing concepts in technology education. Students enrolling in the course should be interested in helping to drive its direction and content. They should be independent learners, willing to take responsibility for learning new material from sources other than textbooks. In particular, they should be prepared to learn from each other and from technical and nontechnical community participants.

There are no formal prerequisites for the course, but, for maximal comfort,  participants should be able at least to write a simple program, compose a web page, or have some familiarity with at least one commercial software package. Students with more advanced computing knowledge will be invited to help with computational instruction.

The course may be repeated any number of times for credit, and students are strongly encouraged to participate in the long term. Future years should find a diverse group of collaborating students enrolled, from beginners to experienced technical leaders.


Freshmen and sophomores should enroll in 2830-810. Juniors and seniors should enroll in 4830-810. The course is not presently open to graduate students.

Instructor permission is required to enroll. Please send email to Prof.  Liz Jessup ( with a few words about why you are interested in the course and what you feel you could contribute to it. Include a brief synopsis of your experience in computing. If you have conflicts with the class times, please mention those, too. Please feel free to ask questions as well.

Meeting Times

T,Th 5-6:15.   Some meeting times will be used for lab exercises.

The brainstorming workshop will be held on Friday evening and Saturday morning early in February.   (Check here later for definite dates.)  Attendance is required--it is where project ideas will be formed.

Credit Hours

The present offering is a 3 credit hour course. One hour and three hour continuation courses will be offered in subsequent semesters for students wishing to continue their work in the Development Center.

The Institute for Women and Technology

CU's Development Center is part of the Institute for Women and Technology's nationwide, university-based Virtual Development Center (VDC). For more information on the VDC, see . The course is open to all interested women and men.