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SEED Lab Extension and Parameterization

The popular SEED labs of the University of Syracuse experience thousands of monthly downloads; however, in several ways the utility of the labs could be improved. First, the labs have gaps in their pedagogical coverage. Second, it is often difficult for instructors to reuse the labs in ways that prevent students from reusing the answers from the previous year(s). Third, it is sometimes difficult for instructors to visualize how particular SEED labs might complement their lecture materials, whether for a security course or for one that could incorporate a unit on a security topic. Fourth, the labs have not been structured to invite external contributions.

The proposed effort is to provide remediation of the first three problems and to address the last through exploration of lab frameworks and specifications that would foster increased collaboration. Specific advances from the previous work are:

- Design and development of new laboratory exercise packages to elucidate carefully identified topics.

- We will organize the materials so that instructors can more easily integrate them into courses.

- Easy to use mechanisms, including parameterization, to thwart student cheating on exercises.

- Initial exploration of the use of challenge-based exercises as a way to expand the universe of learners.

- An exploratory study of a collaborative framework for community development of lab exercises.
Computer Science
National Science Foundation