as the first programming language

An initiative of the Section of Logic and Computation coordinated by Amílcar Sernadas.

The Section decided to introduce the language of Mathematica as the first programming language taught to the first year students at IST, starting in 96/97 for:

More recently, this approach was extended to:

This choice was made taking into account the following advantages of Mathematica over the classical alternatives (around lower level languages such as Pascal, C or FORTRAN90):

The availability of a great number of good textbooks on Mathematica and its application to sciences and engineering was also a major factor.

It is expected that this intiative will have far reaching consequences for the teaching of subsequent courses on Numerical Methods and Calculus, as well as on specialized engineering courses where computation plays an important role.

The students will also be exposed to a lower level programming language at a later stage of their curricula.

Some useful links

For futher information contact:
Last update: October 3, 2002.