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I received a Bachelor's degree in Computer Science through the University of Texas System in 2004. I enjoy tutoring beginning college mathematics(Intermediate/Finite), Algebra, Calculus I,II, and Mathematical Reasoning (Proof Writing) as we... See more
I am a life-long Chicagoan who earned B.S. and M.S. degrees in Computer Science at UIC. I have 15 years of professional experience as a Software Engineer, and a true passion for teaching. I specialize in tutoring core Java, Java Spring, C#,... See more
I have recently retired after about 40 years working in the science and technology fields, the last 30 years with IBM Corporation. During my long career I have often been involved with tutoring, mentoring, and enrichment programs for studen... See more
Back in the 1970s, the computer market was still burgeoning and there were not a lot of programming languages, let alone people who knew enough about what they were doing to know how to code in the first place. These days, there are more coding languages than one person can remember and there are more coders than ever before. In the early years, when languages were not as developed, we needed people like Niklaus Wirth to develop their own languages that we could subsequently use. As minicomputers began to rise, Wirth developed Pascal, which became the standard for teaching programming for the decade. Learning from private Pascal tutors was much more common back then because there were not a lot of options for programmers to use. Since then, there are simpler languages that are better than Pascal, which is why it has started to be phased out. For around 20 years, Pascal was common at universities and most students in programming languages would learn Pascal first. In 1984, Wirth even won the Turing Award, named for Alan Turing, which is the highest prize in the field of computer science. Think of it as the Nobel Prize for computer scientists. Despite that award, it was just a few years later that C displaced Pascal as the language to learn, coinciding with the rise of UNIX-based systems. Although we may not use Pascal like we used to, there are still plenty of people learning it for the foundational principles.
Just because you are not going to use Pascal when you move on to practical programming, it does not mean you should forgo it. I would compare it to learning to ride a bike. In many cases, the toughest part of learning to ride a bike is to maintain balance and stability while you are trying to peddle forward. To isolate some of the skills, you start out first by learning on a tricycle, which makes balancing easy. Although the tricycle wheels are detachable in most cases, people usually move on to another, real bicycle when they are graduating off three wheels. In this way, Pascal is like the tricycle to C’s bicycle. Pascal uses control structures with reserved words including if, then, else, and while, which are all terms that will translate to other languages. Learning them in the low stakes setting of Pascal will allow you to increase the complexity when you get to C languages. You might assume that Pascal is stuck in the past based on the old fashioned nature, but it has actually still managed to evolve as other languages are developed. Instead of staying behind, Pascal is actually more powerful now than the original thanks to improvements that have come from other languages.
Here are the things to consider when you are getting ready to search for Pascal tutors near me. What are you looking to do with it? What are others using to do those same things? I would say that there really is no need to learn the original Pascal language because modern languages are much better. The other thing to consider is the resources that are available to you. Although you might believe Pascal to be the best, the community is not going to do much to support you with that. When you look for textbooks to help you learn, you are going to find out pretty quickly that there are not as many good Pascal books as there are good C++ books. Popularity is not always the best indicator of what is best, but it will definitely influence the quality and quantity of resources available to you, so that is certainly something to consider. Although people might see Pascal as a waste of time, the best reason to learn the language is because it is a good base language to describe algorithms and you might find that the foundation of Pascal makes other languages a breeze.
I have spent a lot of the space above talking about how Pascal is an old language learned by programmers in the 70s and 80s, which might make you think that there is nobody who can teach it to you today, but that is an area you would be wrong. Although we might not have tutors that are in their 20s and early 30s that can help you, there are plenty of older tutors that learned Pascal in college back in their day and still have the ability to pass forward the knowledge that they gained as private Pascal tutoring options. You might think that they have some rust after decades without using the language, but we make sure before we send anyone out to you that they are not just proficient, but current on their lessons. The language has evolved since the 70s and 80s, so our tutors need to make sure that they are updated accordingly.
In terms of any computer teacher that we hire, we always try to find people that are teachers rather than doers. When I make this distinction, it is not to say that those who can’t do, teach, but instead means that we are looking for people with the patience to teach you how to do things rather than doing them for you and expecting that you can recreate it. So many teachers will try to speed things up by doing it themselves, but that is just going to show you the skill of the tutor, not the skill of the student. Students should always make sure that they are able to do things without a tutor because you are not going to have your tutor by your side when you inevitably use the language for whatever reason.
Searching for Pascal tutoring near me has been tough in the past because people just do not know where to look for such an old and nearly obsolete language. That is where we come in because your concerns should just be about learning the material and not finding someone good enough to teach it to you.
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