This is a FAQ for CS505: "Computational Thinking for Teachers". The first course in a 20 credit certificate program that trains you for getting a State of Idaho Endorsement to teach computer science courses. As I get questions or find errors I will update this FAQ for all to see. Follow this page. If you have questions you can mail me at>.

  1. What is the "Graduate Certificate in Computer Science Education"? (Formerly called a "Masters Certificate".

    Ans: It is a certificate at the graduate level. It is NOT a masters degree. It is a necessary step to get a state of Idaho Endorsement in Computer Science which allows teachers with a teaching certificate to teach Computer Science in K-12. It is called a Graduate Certificate because the required courses are at the "masters level" in the class numbering scheme to match the level of the courses in Boise State's on campus program. But it may help in Idaho pay grade.

  2. What was that ad you sent out for this course and program?

    Ans: It is the CS505 ad.

  3. Can the certificate be acquired entirely by video?

    Ans: Almost. There will be at least a week of practicum in one of the pedagogy classes and planned.

  4. What kinds of courses will be in the program?

    Ans: While the program has yet to be approved by all the appropriate committees. The courses are approximately these 21 credits:

    • CS505 Introduction to Computational Thinking (UI) (3 credits) Fall
    • CS120 Computer Science I (UI) (4 credits) Spring
    • CS121 Computer Science II (UI) (3 credits) Summer
    • CS213 Algorithms & Data Structures (UI & LCSC) (4 credits) Fall
    • CTE J419/J519 (3 credits) Spring or other elective
    • EDCI Computer Science Education Methods (UI) (4 credits) Summer
  5. How will the course be delivered?

    Ans: It will be delivered by video and live courses. It is preferred that students enrolled go to one of the video classrooms in Coeur D'Alene, Idaho Falls, or Moscow. However, we will be using Zoom (see question below). Contact the instructor if you want to Zoom from another location. This option is experimental. We may request that all single users mute their stations and text in questions. This is the first time for this course and we are still learning. We want people from anywhere in the state to have access.

  6. What if I have no programming experience, will I still be able to take this course and finish this program?

    Ans: The first course is for people with absolutely no experience in programming. We start at the very beginning assuming you can use the internet to download some free software or have your IT people do that. Can you pass this course and program. Who can say. We will try our best to help you succeed but success is not guaranteed. You will learn a boat load of stuff and be tested by practice and exams. The first course is designed to be fun, entertaining, and low cost. Check it out. See if you like it.

  7. How long is the CS505 course?

    Ans: The course is a full semester and equivalent to the on campus course CS112. There are about 45 one hour lectures, about 8 homeworks, and 3 tests.

  8. So aren't CS112 and CS505 just the same course?

    Ans: The basic content is the same, but teachers tend to be a clever lot and I can move faster with you guys so I suspect we will see more than the regular CS112. We will have several educators come and talk which won't happen in CS112. Also I know I am teaching to teachers, so I may comment on teaching the material and ask teachers to share their thoughts. But the course is basically CS112.

  9. How much does CS505 cost?

    Ans: The first course is a professional development course and can be used for that alone or as part of the route to a CS endorsement. As such, the course only costs $60 per credit hour or $180 total! There are no text books to buy. Support material is on-line. Follow on courses will be at regular university credit but scholarships are being sought through Idaho companies and possibly future grants through the Idaho STEM Action Center.

  10. With a endorsement in CS what will I be able to teach?

    Ans: The endorsement will ultimately be required by the state of Idaho to teach any computer science courses such as programming, algorithms, AP computer science etc.

  11. Does CS505 require any special machines, OS, or software?

    Ans: You need access to a machine onto which you can download software. All the software is free and well documented. To do some homeworks you will need internet access. The software runs on any modern Windows, Apple, Linux and other Unix platforms. Does not work on Chromebooks or IPads.

  12. How many must sign up before the course will be taught?

    Ans: If there are less than 5 the course will not run. If there are less than 8 there is a chance they will cancel it for other reasons.

  13. How do I sign up for the first course: CS505?

    Ans: To sign up you simply filling out this paper work:

    You turn in the form at the FAX number on the form. Payment by credit card is due when you turn in the form.

  14. How do I apply for the full Certificate Program?

    Ans: We are laying track down in front of the train. :-) We are filing for the program through the university system and that takes time. We know what courses will be in the program. It is modeled on an on-campus certificate program at BSU. We see no problems but paperwork and committees to approve the program. The state wants it. The STEM Action Center wants it. The department wants it. So your best bet is to take the courses that we know you will need and then jump into the program when it is approved. The first is CS505 Computational Thinking for Teachers.

  15. What is the difference between a CS Endorsement and teach CS112 Dual Credit?

    Ans: The CS112 Dual Credit class is teaching the exact content of the CS112 class but at a high school. It is run through the Dual Credit office under official rules of Dual Credit. Dual credit classes are audited for content to make sure they are the same as the university course. Contact Linda Strong ( in the Dual Credit office for more information. The endorsement will allow you teach CS courses in Idaho schools at the point that Idaho goes to a full CS endorsement program in which a CS endorsement is required to teach a CS course.

  16. Is there a web page for CS505?

    Ans: Yes, the CS505 class web page is available.

  17. How do I use Zoom from my laptop?

    Ans: First, the class is synchronous, that is, you have to show up at the class time and "join the meeting". That is we run a multipoint videoconferencing tool called Zoom. We will be using it in a "meeting format for training" model. We hope for your cooperation in getting this to work. This is new for us

  18. How is zoom used for the class?

    Ans: Students will be emailed a code to allow them to "join the meeting". This code is private between us. Please do not give this code out. When you join you will appear on the screen. We will work out how to run the class and post the rules of etiquette for being in the class and not interrupting for everyone. It will feel like you are in Facetime or Skype call with the class here in Moscow.

    Note, we have to have your email in order to mail the code to you. Be sure we have that information.

    We are toying with recording the session but we'll work that out once we get the system running. The course is well practiced, but we are the guinea pigs for this technology.

  19. What rooms are the classes physically held in?


    They are in Room:

    • Engineering Physics 204 (EP204) University of Idaho, Moscow, ID
    • ?? at the Harbor Center 1031 N Academic Way, Coeur d'Alene, ID
    • Center for Higher Education Room 301 (CHE301) at 1776 Science Center Drive, Suite 306, Idaho Falls, ID