Computer Science

St. Olaf’s Computer Science curriculum offers a breadth-first introduction to CS that makes the fundamental principles of CS available to liberal-arts students of any discipline, and simultaneously develops the analytical thinking skills needed for later courses. Starting with the first course (which satisfies the College’s Mathematical Reasoning [MAR] requirement), the program emphasizes a hands-on approach to teaching, which emphasizes learning intellectual concepts through concrete exercises. The courses span national expectations for CS curricula, and the program embraces its liberal arts context in the organization of its major, its emphasis on teamwork and communication skills, its involvement in interdisciplinary projects, and its distinctive, integrated interest in computing ethics.

Combined with St. Olaf’s approach to the liberal arts and any other interests or major one may have, the thinking skills, ethical analysis, empowering concepts and learning experiences offered by CS courses prepare students to make lifelong contributions to the 21st century world, whether in computing-related areas or in fields not usually associated with computing.