F5-COMP5-4 - Research on Parallel Computing Teaching: state of the art and future directions

3. Research Full Paper
Thiago Duraes1 , Paulo Souza1, Guilherme Martins1, Davi Conte1, Naylor Bachiega1, 2, Sarita Bruschi1
1 University of Sao Paulo
2 Parana Federal Institute

This research full paper identifies how the teaching of parallel computing has been developing over the years. The learning of parallel and distributed computing is fundamental for computing professionals, due to the popularization of parallel architectures. Teaching parallel computing involves theoretical concepts and the development of practical skills. Its content is dense and comprises different disciplines in computer courses. Although there is growing concerned about this type of teaching, the organization and depth of parallel computing teaching at universities change widely. The available literature on the teaching of parallel computing shows some experiences about how to teach parallel computing; however, it is not easy to determine the state of the art with challenges and gaps. Our objective is to identify essential aspects related to the teaching of parallel computing as methodologies, supporting resources, subjects taught, the satisfaction of students with learning and curricula. We carried out a systematic mapping to extract information from the literature, which is composed of three phases: planning, conduction, and reporting. We initially selected 819 papers from the Scopus, IEEE, ACM and Google Scholar databases. After a previous analysis, we performed a full read of 94 papers. The use of different teaching methodologies appears in the publications, however, the traditional teaching methodology still is the most used. There is a small number of students in parallel computing courses, a concern of different authors. Educational software or hardware resources are reported, with software proposals corresponding to most of them. The teaching of parallel computing at the beginning of undergraduate courses appear in different papers. This paper contributes to research in teaching parallel computing, pointing out the state of the art of this area, highlighting challenges that should be the focus of investigations.