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jerm

computer classes in high school

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I was just wondering about everyone else's high school computer classes. The ones at my school were a joke just learning office programs or typing.

there was one webdesign class which i never took but it was just html which i already knew about.

so how were the computer classes at your high school?

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We had GW-BASIC, though it was self-taught from a book. The computer "teacher" didn't even know how to use her own computer, let alone actually teach anything. She was also famous for paying insane amounts of money for shitty hardware, and blowing the entire (tiny) budget on junk that didn't work. She's still there, but apparently someone else runs the computers now, and she just watches over the lab.

Computer classes in high school are a joke. If you're lucky, you'll have someone understanding who will let you do self-study for credit, or at least let you do it undisturbed. If you're really lucky, you'll have someone who knows what they're talking about, and who will actually teach you things. Though if they knew these things, why would they be working in a high school? High school IT guy/computer teacher is about the bottom rung on the computer career ladder, don't expect much (if anything at all).

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Don't lament too much on how High School computer classes are a "joke" and don't teach you anything. Health classes are a joke to people that want to go to med school, drafting classes are a joke to people that want to be engineers, etc etc. Some topics just don't translate well into High School curricula.

As Ohm suggested, a good course of action is an independent study. More often than not, that would probably depend on having someone at your school a little better versed in the material, so they can advise you for the program. Alternatively, you could look into taking some introductory programming classes at a local community college or university (though you'll probably need to be a junior or senior to get that to fly). Most schools ought to let you take something like that in place of a general education class.

At any rate, if you want to explore such things in class form while in high school, it's going to be up to *you* to devise the opportunities and explore them. Otherwise, more often than not, they're just not going to be as simple as a class you register for next fall.

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High school IT guy/computer teacher is about the bottom rung on the computer career ladder, don't expect much (if anything at all).

I will disagree with you here since I am a High School IT guy. I believe I know quite a bit. I may not be the most "1337 haxor" but I do know a few things. I choose to work at a school for several reasons. 1.) My wife works in the school system so we get the same days off. 2.) Not to sound cliche but the kids are our future and if I help just one I have helped.

I have many others and if you would like to here them please feel free to ask.

BOT

Computer classes in High school can not teach you how to hack legally. They can only teach certain things ie basic computing and HTML and in some places basic networking. Now with that being said I have a few students that shadow me. I am not a teache,r I am a on sight Computer Tech/ IT network guy. I teach them as much as I can. I do not teach them anything illegal and I warn them to use everything they learn for good so to speak. If they have questions about something they have read or seen I encourage them to ask.

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At my high-school they have tech support for students. I found out that they get to make their own cat5 cables which I thought was cool, but other than that it was kinda tedious work. I think most of the work could be sovled by an automated install. The school finally made a switch to winxp (the syllabus said they have to learn how to install win98 properly, I don't know about you, but how hard is popping in a cd and letting it run?). They also have to network the computers. Heard my teacher call one of them a "guru" which I thought was a joke because I could have done the same (the teacher pisses me off so I won't work on her computers and I could have the computer actually run fast, so much shit is on startup it's ridiculous!).

All in all, it shouldn't be hard. Bet they probably use the recovery disk or linux to recover the files then reinstall.

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We have a pretty cool Cisco-sponsored program at our school. I'm actually learning stuff, I can receive college credit for only several hundred dollars, and for several hundred more I can get my CCNA by next year. Pretty damn good to have all that right out of high school. We have the same sort of thing for computer engineering (college credits & A+ cert), and a programming class, but the programming class _was_ a joke (First quarter was QBASIC, second we "updated" to Visual Basic 6...nuff said).

Computer classes in High school can not teach you how to hack legally. They can only teach certain things ie basic computing and HTML and in some places basic networking

Uh, yeah, they can teach you whatever they damn want, and there's no such thing as "teaching to hack illegally" anyway. Security is security. Our CCNA curriculum, I believe, has been expanded to bring to light more security issues. Wireshark is one of the main programs we use all year, and we've even seen video tutorials on how to retrieve passwords from a telnet session.

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In high school I've had classes about the whole Microsoft Office suite, and also a little bit of programming with the MicroWorld software, which is not really "programming". It is more of some kind of educative software to make simple programs. As high school computer classes are more than basic, you should see them as an opportunity to read on advanced stuff. My C++ Tutorial, www.planetcpp.info, I've written it when I was in high school.

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I was so funny during my senior year in high school i only had 3 real classes the rest of the time i was a tech aid and i had one "advance" computer class but most of the time i was having to put computers together or install programs.

Our computer teacher was the old typing teacher which means that's what you learn how to type not fun.

That's why the last 6 weeks of my senior year i had a 55 in the class and she started passing out the final to the other seniors that wanted to take it i asked my buddy if i should take it he looked it over and said sure. I made a 99 on that test with out even seeing the study guide or even studying for it. But tech isn't a big priority in this county and my highschool was always last to get anything done to it. but whatever i'm out and don't have to go back.

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I actually learned some things in my HS computer classes that I wouldn't have learned elsewhere. I know Office 2003 like the back of my hand thanks to that class, something I wouldn't have spent as much time on otherwise. Also, when it came time for the department to buy new software, I suggested Flash development so we got to make things in Flash for the rest of the year.

Yeah, some of it was lame (this is the inside of a computer, wow) but you sit through it and make the best you can out of it, because your going to be spending time in there either way.

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We got Comp Science AP, Electronics, etc. But one credit that is necessary is Computer Info Tech. I feel sick thinking about it. Its pathetic. Although I have learned Office....:-/

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I was in grade school and high school in the pre-Internet days. :)

Here's some of what I can remember learning:

- BASIC programming on a TRS-80 Model III

- LOGO programming on a C-64

- working with memory via BASIC (good old PEEK and POKE) on a C-64

- assembly language programming on an Apple II

- QBasic programming on a PC

- hardware interfacing on a PC (BASIC program to send and receive data via serial port to a circuit I built on a breadboard)

Had a lot of fun. Had pretty much the same computer teacher throughout, and he and I are friends to this day.

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The classes at my school were identical to the ones you are describing. I basically use them as an excuse to surf the net at school. I did learn a lot though. They were actually what got me really interested in computers. And to think, that was just two years ago. I have come a long way since then. If it were not for those classes, I would not be here on these forums. They really inspired me to learn more.

EDIT: I just took a look at your profile. I am from Alabama too. I have noticed that there aren't that many technological opportunities in high school here. That is why I am moving to another state soon. I would like to go to a better college.

Edited by L33T_j0sH
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We had AP Comp Sci AB. Unfortunately for everyone who isn't taking AP AB yet, you'll have to settle for AP A because not enough people are smart enough to take AB, or something like that.

AB was a good class, I learned a lot about data structures and algorithms.

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Interestingly enough the computer classes at my high school were pretty good. I already knew everything we learned in the normal computer science class, but I think thats saying something about me rather than the class considering the class taught C. Plus the teacher was one of the coolest guys ever. Once I got into AP the next year though I learned a bunch of stuff. That one taught Java and I learned a metric asston. They also offered an ROP class, Computer Networks and Systems, which I didn't take, but I did have a friend who took it and he said he learned a lot.

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my old school had c++, visualbasic, and web design. (not to bad had some decant borland IED's) the school i am at now has game design 1-2, c++, web design, and 3d game design. (better) at my old school we had done "first robotics" so c and some hardware development i suppose. i guess it just depends on the school and the teachers.

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We have a pretty cool Cisco-sponsored program at our school. I'm actually learning stuff, I can receive college credit for only several hundred dollars, and for several hundred more I can get my CCNA by next year. Pretty damn good to have all that right out of high school. We have the same sort of thing for computer engineering (college credits & A+ cert), and a programming class, but the programming class _was_ a joke (First quarter was QBASIC, second we "updated" to Visual Basic 6...nuff said).

This sounds similar to the program at my old high school, or at least the engineering part. Ours was a four-year high school curriculum that consisted of both hardware and software classes. I'm not too sure of what the classes entailed exactly (I was in a different program entirely), but I know that when you graduated from the program, you were A+ hardware and software certified, and had the opportunity to take some other certification exams (for CCNA and stuff) at reduced fees.

It's an appealing alternative to kids who want to work right out of high school instead of going on to more school, and also as a fall-back option should college not go so well. Not to mention you can apply the credits you earn toward a 2- or 4-year degree. Basically, fewer kids wandering aimlessly unemployed or from one joe job to the next.

Overall it was a great program, and I always asked myself why it wasn't offered everywhere in my state. Part of me thinks it is limited by the government's "omg haxorz" paranoia, and the unwillingness to fund that which is not football in some high schools.

EDIT: Oh, and we also had an unrelated programming class, and it was total garbage. The title of the class may as well have been Age of Empires.

Edited by Da Ch33z
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At the high school I had graduated from we had a web design class and another class for learning some of Microsoft's Office apps.

I signed up for the web design for two consecutive years but they ended up not having the class due to 3 people wanting to take it.

But we did have a vocational class offered at a school 45 minutes away. So I ended up taking that. It was titled IT:ISS and it was based around the A+ curriculum. We had about 10 students, I was the only one to pass the two tests. It's sad because as we all know it's very basic knowledge.

I wish we had learned cool shit like what mirrorshades had.

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wow you guys make me feel so much better about my high school :) i went to a boarding school and they taught me and paid for me to get my A+ and my Network+, and helped me study a bunch of CCNA. They also paid for me to take 2 C++ programming classes with a college and allowed me to teach a web development class my senior year. They also had me teaching 9th graders how to use Macromedia Flash.

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I took web design at my high school for 3 years. It was a joke. Me and my buddy did the pages in 5 minutes and went back to playing counter-strike. The teacher didn't care, because we got everything in a very orderly and efficient manner. We were conned into inputting the standardized test grades into an excel spreadsheet. But yes, THAT class was a joke, But it was nice, since I didn't have a study hall.

It would have been nice to take an office class. Now, studying for engineering, we use excel for tons of different purposes. And knowing word for those gay gen-ed classes is a plus. While it may seem boring as fuck, I found myself re-learning office because of the new layout in 2007. As lame as a class it would be, it would still b helpful.

I took a vocational A+ class my senior year. We didn't learn shit about the info on the A+ cert exam. I was the only on to pass. We did learn about IRQs, memory addressing, the components of the motherboard (northbridge, southbridge), binary anding and all sorts of interesting stuff. While most of the kids didn't take much away form the class (they didn't care), my teacher was still an intelligent guy. He was a musician and an apple tech before he came tot he school to teach. He taught a lot about dealing with customers and basic business operations, which has already come in handy since i work for the techology services at my university.

The greatest part of the class was diving headfirst into electronics. We learned basic DC and discussed the principles of vacuum tubes and all sorts of wicked ideas. We discussed a lot of cool concepts. Even though I am the only one who get certified, I still think the kids who payed attention learned a shit load. We went above and beyond the lame A+ expectations, and I look upon my A+ cert with scorn. IMHO, any fucknut who has used windows can get certified.

Lastly, the idea of a computer class is to teach kids about computers. You don't expect them to know how to program when they come into the class. Most of them are ignorant and simply don't give a fuck.

Sorry to be grammatically gay, for my southern indiana slang, and my shitty typing accuracy.

Hope this helps,

Zraith

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Before giving my opinion I want to stress that I did my highschool in Portugal where I am born and raised. I've never been in US where I believe most of you are from, but I am sure we're talking about very different realities.

I had computer classes for one year back in 97/98, it was quite boring. We only went through the very very basics of information systems, like: what's a bit, a byte, a KB, MB and the conceptual schematic of a computer. That was like one or two weeks and for most of the students it was more like memorizing a couple of words which meaning was totally unknown.

After that we spent the year learning how to use Microsoft word and Exel, ok. Personally I am not so interested in that kind of knowledge, if I should be honest I don't use an office application since like the third year at the university. But I must be fair, those applications were taught in a rather good detail, when I finished I knew how to use those esoteric MS office features.

Now, for me that was not a big deal, but i think it was quite useful to many of my colleges, I come from the country, many many people doesn't study beyond highschool, being comfortable using MS office was a big help for many when they got their jobs. MS Office is very used in small companies.

So in general I think the classes were good, unfortunately I had no use to the knowledge I got from them.

A few years after (like 5 or so) some younger cousins of mine asked me for a little help on their homework on computer classes. I got impressed with the way the classes were so well made. They had to go through an open box and identify each piece, know what's the function of each, know why do computers need bot internal end external memory wan how they differ from each other, etc etc.

I thought to myself: "I wouldn't need to brick two boxes in order to learn how a computer works if I had this".

As in everything, i guess it also depends on a teacher. If you have a teacher that is devoted to teaching, then, for sure, it will be worth it.

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At my high school (When I went to high school), we had

A+ Cert Class

Networking + Cert Class

VB.NET

Java

AP CS (I was the only one to sign up for it all 4 years, so they did not run it :( )

IT Intern

I think that was the best computer class I have seen around. I got credit to fix computers work on networks, and when we had nothing I would mess with old (3 years old...That is old at my school) Dell enterprise servers that they were not using any more.

I really like the ITI class. It was fun but could be a drag if we had nothing to do. Good thing about that class was you had to be approve for the class, so you did not have to be around idiots all day. Easy A. and it got me on the front page of the California Paper 2 times. I could not complain.

All an easy A if you tried, and that is a big IF. HS computer classes are fun for abut a week then you just hate them, because the teacher can not answer your questions, the other students think they are so 1337, and they only teach the vary basics. Bet hey it is only HS.

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I'm envious of you guys who had classes that got you certs. As a guy recently out of high school and making very little money I realize getting a cert like that in high school could be paying off big time right now. They really need to have more programs like that for all kinds of professions.

Edited by Dr. Z2A
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The school I attended offered a wide range of classes, including: Q-Basic, C, C++, Basic Computer performance, VB, HTML, and all the simple Word processor classes like you said.

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I'm envious of you guys who had classes that got you certs. As a guy recently out of high school and making very little money I realize getting a cert like that in high school could be paying off big time right now.

Certification does not automatically equal money; you still need enough experience to be able to do the job you're hired into. If anything, a certification can make a nice supplement to experience, and can probably shift the balance in your favor in the event of other equally-qualified candidates for a job. Also, once you have a job, certification can get you a bit of a raise, depending on your employer (if they have a program in which they reward that kind of professional development).

In general I would say -- and don't take this the wrong way -- a certification for someone coming right out of high school doesn't necessarily represent a whole lot. To really get "into" IT as a profession, you'll need some sort of college degree and experience. Yeah, it means you'll have to do the entry-level/help desk jobs for a while.

Very few ways to shortcut the process and start bringing in the big bucks early. :)

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