Category Archives: education

personal answer – top-5 problems of university education

Students in TDT4140 – Software Engineering ask about  top-5 problems of university education from the viewpoint of professors or teachers

This is a very broad question that can take years to answer. I choose to focus on the specific problems I have encountered as a teacher in the period 1992 – 2013

  1.  difficult for me to develop written exams. expecially at NTNU that exams have to be developed in 3 different languages (none of them being my own).
  2. difficult for me to learn the context of what the students expect and know – I have never been teaching in the university where I have studied, it always seem to me that my colleagues who had been students in the same university know more than me.
  3. difficult for me (who always had a lot of duties in family life, research and more and more administration) to follow computer science trends in a way that the teaching content and method are up to date with respect to technology, industry, and society needs
  4. difficult to accept critiques in a  constructive way
  5. difficult to cooperate with other teachers and assistants, even if you are willing to cooperate, it can be difficult to cooperate when the tasks are so challenging

I think I have been a good teacher in Experts in Team courses that I gave for more than 10 years. I like to communicate in an interactive way and let the students speak and work rather than talking to them for hours.





@ntnu #IDI

We have experienced pupils from Culture school in Trondheim who have shown us art, music, and clown art. These are children who dream looking at the stars as each of us has done and does in our life.

I grew up in Pisa, few hundred meters from Pisa airport that was under construction in the years when I was a little child.  I still remembering looking up from that small street into the night sky and trying to see stars, airplanes, and the lights of the control towers and distinguish between stars, artificial lights, and my own dreams. Nobody has managed to answer how many millions of stars do exist and the question still fascinate scientists as well as philosophers, musicians and dreamers. I have been 33 years in computer science education, practice, and research, first as a student, PhD student, programmer, researcher, professor and department head. The question of how to become a star by making the world better due to excellence in computer science intrigues me and should challenge all the people in this room today and in the years to come.

Welcome to the first gathering at the new Department of Computer Science (Institutt for datateknologi og informatikk, IDI), NTNU. Staff from Kalvskinnet, Gjøvik and Gløshaugen, and close friends and partners have been invited to an evening filled with scientific contributions, art, music, and good food – balm for both body and mind, following the traditions of ITovation.

To build a new and even better team we need to gather and learn to know each other, and what we strive to achieve. The new national Center for Excellent Information Technology Education ( and the new Telenor-NTNU AI-Lab constitutes new possibilities for all of us, and are core themes of the program.

We have personally invited the best possible stars that will inspire us toward international excellence in computer science education, research, and innovation. Tatiana Rizzante, Heidi Austlid, Bjørn Taale Sandberg, Barbara Ericson, and Mark Guzdial, were our first choices when we set up our initial program. And they all answered yes to my invitation to be keynote speakers at our event. We are all deeply thankful and proud for this.

Excellence is to dare to look at the stars to be inspired and enlighten. Nobody can be a star at the same time in education, research, innovation and leadership. Even if the university system is based on indicators, you should not compare yourself and compete with your near colleague. On the contrary, research and education are a team effort. We have been asking the question about why we merge. We merge because we want to make an even better contribution to the society we are an important part of.

E quindi uscimmo a riveder le stelle – And thence we came forth to see again the stars (Dante Alighieri 1300)  Again Welcome to the first gathering at the new Department of Computer Science and thanks for being here.

Enter a caption

Edvard Munch, Sternennacht / Starry Night, 1922-1924

UMI-Sci-Ed – official education in Norway

Finally a post about education and research. In the context of the newly started project Exploiting Ubiquitous Computing, Mobile Computing and the Internet of Things to promote STEM Education (UMI-Sci-Ed) H2020, 2016–2019 we are asked to provide urls for official education in Norway. So I start and hope for feedback’s from colleagues and friends.

Ministry of Education and Research is responsible for primary and secondary school, upper secondary and tertiary vocational education and higher education sectors, kindergartens, cultural schools, vocational education and training and adult learning. The Ministry is also responsible for research. It is one of 16 ministries of the Norwegian government (
The Directorate is the executive agency for the Ministry of Education and Research.
Norway is divided in 19 counties. Each County is responsible of upper secondary schools. Trondheim is situated in Sør-Trøndelag Fylkeskommune (STFK). STFK has 22 upper secondary schools with approx. 11.000 students in the 16 – 21 age group. The schools offer general and vocational education. The County Authority is also responsible for apprenticeship training and adult education. Norway is divided into 428 municipalities. Municipalities are the atomic unit of local government in Norway and are responsible for primary education (until 10th grade).

English Norwegian URL
Ministry of Education and Research


The Norwegian Directorate for Education and Training Utdanningsdirektoratet
Sør-Trøndelag County Authority Sør-Trøndelag Fylkeskommune (STFK)
Trondheim Municipality Trondheim Kommune


In Norway the curriculum in programming is very limited in the different stages of education. In secondary school we cannot find any curriculum on programming/coding, but a optional course for a limited number of secondary schools in the country that is starting up this fall(2016)[0]. In upper secondary school (11th-13th year) there is more options to specialize in computing and programming. Here [1] is the resource from the education department where it’s possible to search through all courses provided in the Norwegian upper secondary school, with curriculum. Here are some courses that I think you will find interesting in regards to ICT [2], and [3].

[0] Nor:

[1] Eng:
[2] Eng:
[3] Eng:

You can read more about the norwegian educational system/model at short[4] long [5] .

[4] Eng:

[5] Eng:

The pedagogical approaches and class formation are pretty standard I believe, but different schools in different regions are often part of programs to explore different sizes and classroom landscapes.

The standard class sizes are about 20 pupils per teacher. Classroom are as standard as you would find them elsewhere in the world.

The Norwegian school system provides every pupil with a personal computer at the start of upper secondary school (Example from our district [6]), there has also been experiments with computers in lower school levels [7].

[6] Eng:

[7] Eng:

@WorkWorkTrd @ljosland

inspired after meeting with Marius Thorvaldsen, Jone, and one of my heroes since late 90’s, Borgar Ljosland.

we discussed “la bellezza e’ negli occhi di chi la guarda”, education, research, innovation, young girls and technology, with our eyes toward gaming, Trondheim as a talent magnet and playful arena. Here the kodeløypa page and video



#Informatikk #datateknikk @ntnu @beritkjeldstad @imefakultet @HiGjovik @hials @ReitanMarit @StrommenIngvald

Do we know how many of the 40.000 students of the new NTNU will be Computer Science Students?

Norway needs engineers who understand software, many of them. See for example this article on TU. Institutt for Data og Informasjonsvitenskap (IDI) wants to contribute to make Computer Science visible and clear in the new NTNU.

Without discussing these issues and these numbers, it will be difficult to evaluate proposals about University structure.

TAGS – Software, Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, Computer Games, Technology Enhanced Learning, Algorithms, Visualization, Health Informatics, Cloud Computing, Architecture, Security, Human Computer Interaction

Mission @HiGjovik @ntnu #art #technology started

I am inspired and happy after conversations with new colleagues at campus Gjøvik, thanks to everybody expecially Simon McCallum and Rune Hjelsvold


Kunst kommenterer verdenen vi lever i, en verden som i økende grad berøres av teknologiske verktøy og løsninger. Hvordan kan vi tenke rundt koblingen mellom fremtidens kunst og teknologi? Det var tema for torsdagens lunsjseminar.

Professor og instituttleder for datateknikk og informasjonsvitenskap ved NTNU, Maria Letizia Jaccheri og billedkunstner Frøydis Helene Frøsaker kom torsdag til Høgskolen i Gjøvik for å snakke om koblingen mellom kunst og teknologi. De gav spennende eksempler på bruk av teknologi i kunsten, og hvordan kunstuttrykk også kan integreres i teknologiske løsninger.

Som vert for arrangementet, Simon McCallum, påpekte innledningsvis, er teknologi også nødt til å handle om presentasjon av teknologien.

-Kunst og teknologi hører sammen, og har gjort det i flere hundre år, sa Frøsaker.

– Tidligere eksisterte ikke disse skillene mellom kunst og vitenskap, eller kunst og teknologi. I dag kan teknologi blant annet være en kanal for moderne kunst, men teknologien kan også dra nytte av kunsten, mente Frøsaker, og viste videre til at selv en tekniker kan tenke som en kunster, som Leonardo Da Vinci gjorde det under renessansen.

De to foredragsholderne viste et engasjert publikum hvordan koblingen mellom kunst og teknologi byr på utfordringer, men at de også kan dra nytte av hverandre.

Jaccheri, som har skrevet boken «Kjærlighet og computer» slo fast at vi trenger kunst og teknologi i forening for å forstå verden, for å forstå teknologien, for å forstå oss selv og for å oppnå mer – sammenkoblet kan både kunst og teknologi komme et steg videre.

-Det er mye bra som kan skje hvis vi jobber sammen og tenker i samme baner, også her på Gjøvik, sa Frøsaker.

Avslutningsvis fikk publikum mulighet til å diskutere mulighetene som ligger i koblingen mellom kunst og teknologi, og reflektere: hvordan kan og vil vi bruke kunst og teknologi sammen for å få en mer uttrykksfull campus – hva mener du?

Bilde: f.v.: Maria Letizia Jaccheri og Frøydis Helene Frøsaker