However, in our view this career-oriented evaluation understates the importance of studying IT. “Computational thinking”—problem analysis and decomposition, algorithmic thinking, algorithmic expression, abstraction, modeling, stepwise fault isolation—is central to an increasingly broad array of fields. Programming is not just an incredibly valuable skill (although it certainly is that)—it is the hands-on inquiry-based way that we teach computational thinking. Those who can practice computational thinking, and who can wield the power of computer effectively, will be in the position to make greater contributions than those who can’t. Indeed, the 2013 Nobel Prize in Chemistry was for computer models, and the official press release said, “Today the computer is just as important a tool for chemists as the test tube.”
Richard Dawkins, author of the classic book The Selfish Gene, commented similarly: “Biology nowadays is a branch of computer science.”
Fields from anthropology to zoology are becoming information fields, which is why we think students of all majors should study computer science.
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