Teaching Formal Methods in Computer Science Undergraduates.
Abstract: Formal Methods refer to a variety of
mathematical modeling techniques, which are used both to model the behaviour
of a computer system and to verify that the system satisfy design, safety
and functional properties. The incorporation of a Formal Methods course
in the undergraduate Computer Science curriculum is strongly suggested
by scientific societies such as ACM, IEEE and BCS. In this paper, we record
out experience of teaching the 2nd year Computer Science students Formal
Specification, using Z notation as a paradigm. We present a methodology
for teaching formal specification as well as criteria for setting and assessing
students work. We argue that students, through a rigorous mathematical
approach to system specification, acquire knowledge, skills and abilities
that are useful in all courses of the curriculum as well as in their professional
lives as Computer Scientists.
Keywords: Computer Science Curriculum, Teaching and Learning,
Formal Methods, Formal Specification
Appeared in: Procedings of the International Conference on Applied
and Theoretical Mathematics, Vravrona, Greece, Dec.1-3, (also appeared
in Recent Advances in Applied and Theoretical Mathematics, Nikos Mastorakis
(ed.) WSES, pp.91-95), 2000
Available: Hardcopy on request from the authors.
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