Aalborg University (AAU) is a renowned university in Denmark, founded in 1974. Education and research within the fields of natural sciences, social sciences, humanities, and technical and health sciences are offered at AAU. The university awards Bachelors, Master’s, Ph.D. and Doctoral degrees in various fields within the different programmes, institutes, and centres. Approximately 20,729 students are enrolled at AAU, 13% of whom are international students from European countries, the Americas, Oceania, Asia, and Africa.
Department of Electronic Systems is the biggest department at the university and internationally highly ranked on its area (no 36 on the 2017 QS ranking up from 37 and 41 in 2016 and 2015, respectively). Center for Communication, Media and Information Technologies (CMI, www.cmi.aau.dk) is a center under the Department of Electronic Systems and is based in Copenhagen. CMI engages in research and teaching in the area of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs), including information technology (IT), telecommunications and media/broadcast. One important focus of CMI is the convergence of technologies and industries, with special attention to the novel Internet technologies, which increasingly are becoming the common platforms for ICT-based industries. With a scientific staff of 13 persons and 17 Ph.Ds, CMI offers BSc. and MSc programs in computer engineering with a focus in IT services, market, and innovation. As of today, 175 students are enrolled in programmes offered by CMI, 50% of whom are foreign students from Europe, Asia and Africa.
AAU is characterized by the Problem Based Learning (PBL) teaching model. AAU’s approach on the PBL programme is highly recognized internationally, and UNESCO has placed its only Danish chair in PBL at Aalborg University. At CMI, PBL is the foundation for BSc and MSc students’ study activities in terms of 15 ECTS group projects each semester, and it also shapes the approach to how Ph.D. students develop their projects. PBL is a powerful learning method when it comes to teaching programing languages and software engineering. Both courses are indeed important parts of CMI’s bachelor education (ITCOM) and master education (ICTE).
In this project, CMI will use the PBL and the competencies in teaching programming to contribute in the development of the automatic platform for online programming judging. The aim is to make learning programming languages fun and efficient by developing open source tools that can be freely accessible by the involved universities. Currently, CMI is already using existing similar platforms, such as domjudge and dmoj, to enhance the programming learning experience of the students, who find such tools to be crucial components of the education. CMI will use the experience with the issues faced during the deployment and maintenance of such platforms to prepare a versatile, intuitive, and simple tool, in order to facilitate its installation and utilization even by not very technically skilled teachers. Moreover, CMI will contribute with the development of new standardized assignments that can be used by all programming teachers to improve and enhance the learning experience of the students. CMI will further use the possibility to develop tools and methods that makes learning programming more interesting for female students.
Key Persons Involved
Reza Tadayoni PhD, Associate Professor and head of Center for Communication, Media and Information Technologies (CMI). His main research focus is on the ICT development and media convergence. He has developed courses at undergraduate, graduate and PhD level in the field of communication and media technologies. He has over 20 years of experience as a researcher and university teacher. He participated in a number of international research projects, supervised many PhD and MSc theses, and published over 100 scientific papers and research reports. He has been coordinating the CMI’s continuing education program (master of ICT) in the last 15 years and since 2016 is coordinating the AAU part of the ERASMUS Mundus joint degree master program (DCLead).
Sokol Kosta is Assistant Professor at CMI, Department of Electronic Systems, Aalborg University Copenhagen, Denmark. He received the bachelor’s and master’s degree in computer science (Summa cum Laude) from Sapienza University of Rome, Italy, in 2006 and 2009, respectively. In February 2013, he received the PhD degree in Computer Science from Sapienza University of Rome, Italy. During his PhD Sokol visited the Deutsche Telekom Laboratories, Berlin, Germany twice—3 months in 2010 and 3 months in 2011—as a research intern. Sokol did three years of PostDoc at Sapienza University, visiting in the meantime the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) for one year. His research interests include networking, distributed systems, and mobile cloud computing. He has published in some of the topmost conferences and journals like IEEE INFOCOM, ACM/USENIX HotCloud, IEEE P2P, IEEE SECON, ACM SIGMETRICS MAMA, IEEE Transaction on Mobile Computing, IEEE Communications Magazine, IEEE ICC, ACM WWW, among others. He is co-author of a European Patent filed by Deutsche Telekom AG. Sokol has extensive experience with system design and implementation. During his research, he has published several working prototypes on top conferences, and has won several prizes, such as the IEEE Infocom 2013 Best Demo Award, and the IEEE SECON 2013 Best Demo Award. Since his PhD studies, Sokol has been teaching different programming languages, such as Python, C/C++, Assembly, Java, and Android, in several institutions, such as Sapienza University of Rome (as Teaching Assistant), Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (as External Guest Lecturer), and finally, for the past two years, at Aalborg University Copenhagen (as Main Lecturer).
Per Lynggaard received his M.Sc. in EE and IT and his Ph.D. in the areas of artificial intelligence and Internet of Things (IoT) from Aalborg University. The first part of his scientific career (23 years) is based on industrial research in areas such as: structured software development for embedded and distributed systems, software system architect, complex digital signal processing in audio / video systems, advanced machine learning with focus on ECG signals, future wired and resource limited wireless communication systems, software defined radios, integrated circuits and field programmable arrays, and encryption algorithms / systems. In this part of his career he has been awarded with several honors for excellent research and he has been headhunted multiple times. In the second part of his career (10 years) he has been teaching at the Technical University of Denmark in the following topics: digital signal processing and advanced mathematics, digital electronics and FPGA design, software defined radios, and satellite communication. Today Dr. Lynggaard is employed at Aalborg University as an associate professor with the following research and teaching areas: digital signal processing, machine learning, wireless communication, and Internet of Things. He has supervised more than 50 master’s and bachelor projects, lectured in several Ph.D. courses, reviewed several papers for scientific journals, and have authored 12 and co-authored 11 scientific journal and conference papers.