2020 Professional Development

One-Week Workshop for Teachers

BJC Professional Development Workshops

BJC is a College Board-endorsed AP Computer Science Principles curriculum and professional development based on the themes of creativity and social impacts. Since 2012, we have provided professional development to more than 600 teachers throughout the U.S., reaching more than 5,000 students. If you are interested in attending PD in Summer 2020, please complete our BJC Summer 2020 PD interest form.

PD in Winter 2020

BJC will offer a 5 day computer science PD workshop February 16-20 at the University of Rhode Island in Providence with generous support from the Infosys Foundation at the Pathfinders Winter Institute 2020. This opportunity is for public high school teachers only. If you are a not a public high school teacher, we encourage you to leave us your contact information on our BJC Summer 2020 PD Interest Form, so we can notify you when more details about our Summer 2020 workshops are available.

Important Dates

  • October 7, 2019: Applications are open! Please apply on the Pathfinders Winter Institute 2020 Website.
  • December 16, 2019: Application deadline and for teachers to create a project with DonorsChoose.
  • January 16, 2020: Teachers must be 100% funded in order to meet the time frame to attend.
  • February 16, 2020: PD Workshop Begins!

The total program cost per teacher is $2,341. The Foundation will be covering 70% ($1,638.70) for US public school teachers raising funds through school or districts. For teachers raising funds through Donorschoose.org, the Foundation is making a 3X match (previous years Pathfinders provided a 2X match), tripling each donation a teacher receives. Pathfinders will be making relevant accommodations with hotels this year, and teachers will receive fixed visa cards for meals.

If you have any questions about the PD workshop logistics and funding, please contact the Pathfinders Team. If you have any content related questions about the BJC PD workshop, please reach out to the BJC PD Team.

PD in Summer 2020

More information about Summer 2020 PD will be released in Winter 2020, but the below sections provide an idea of what our Summer 2019 workshops looked like. If you are interested in attending PD in Summer 2020, please complete our BJC Summer 2020 PD interest form.

So where was BJC PD being offered in Summer 2019?

Thanks to the generosity of Infosys Foundation USA, BJC offered FREE BJC Computer Science Professional Development for 80 teachers at the Pathfinders Summer Institute on July 14-19, 2019 at Indiana University Bloomington. Funds from Infosys matched funds from schools, districts, and individual donations to make it possible for teachers to attend at no cost. Tuition, travel, boarding and lodging was provided. Find more information and access the application at infy.com/Pathfinders.

We also planned workshops in the following locations:

Date Partner Location Registration
June 24 - 28 University of North Carolina, Charlotte / Charlotte, NC BJC App
July 8 - 12 University of North Texas / Denton, TX (near Dallas) BJC App
July 8 - 12 El Camino College / Torrance, CA BJC App
July 8 - 12 A+ College Ready Decatur High School / Decatur, AL Alabama Registration
July 14 - 19 Pathfinders Infosys Indiana University Bloomington / Bloomington, IN
  1. BJC App
  2. Pathfinders Registration
July 15 - 19 Kean University / Union, NJ (near NYC) BJC App
July 22 - 26 Pump-CS Marquette University / Milwaukee, WI BJC App
July 22 - 26 NMSI NMSI Building / Dallas, TX Closed - NMSI Registration
Email pd@bjc.berkeley.edu for more info.
July 29 - Aug 2 National Louis University / Chicago, IL BJC App
July 29 - Aug 2 Northern Kentucky University / Highland Heights, KY BJC App
Aug 5 - 9 University of California, Berkeley / Berkeley, CA (near San Francisco) BJC App
Aug 5 - 9 George Mason University / Fairfax, VA BJC App
Aug 5 - 9 Olympia Education Building / Olympia, WA (near Seattle) BJC App
Aug 5 - 9 Seminole High School / Seminole, FL (near Tampa) BJC App

NC and SC teachers ONLY: Continuing in 2019, NC State University and The Citadel partnered to offer PD on integrated project-based lessons that integrate computational thinking, BJC-style, into STEM courses for middle and high school. One large 5-day workshop was offered in Charleston, SC June 24-28. For more information, please email us at pd@bjc.berkeley.edu.

Regional BJC PD Model

Professor Tiffany Barnes at NC State University leads our efforts to provide regional BJC professional development workshops at universities around the United States. These workshops have been offered since 2012 at low or no cost to teachers with support from the National Science Foundation (grants 13469222 and 1542922), DonorsChoose, and Infosys Foundation USA.

BJC PD Workshops are led by BJC Master Teachers who have attended a BJC summer PD workshop, taught the BJC course in high school, and participate in our ongoing “Train the Trainer” professional development program. The workshop content is based on the BJC curriculum, but is designed to also prepare teachers for facilitating hands-on programming labs, supporting collaboration, and creating equitable opportunities for students to learn computing.

The BJC Curriculum, In Short

BJC, The Beauty and Joy of Computing, is an AP Computer Science Principles curriculum that emphasizes the joy and complexity of creating visual computer programs and apps, balanced with critical reflection on both the potential benefits and harms of new computing technologies. The Beauty and Joy of Computing adheres to the College Board’s new AP Computer Science Principles course requirements.

BJC has a strong design and programming focus, using the visual programming language Snap! and a collaborative, exploratory approach where students work in teams to bring their own unique creations to life.

BJC is culturally situated, presenting programming and computing ideas not in isolation, but in the context of how students interact with computers in their daily lives. In our readings and discussions, we critically explore how technology has changed the world for better, and for worse, enabling students to understand the potential benefits and harms of creating new things with computing. Student readings are taken mainly from the companion book Blown to Bits, which is available for free online download.

BJC is designed to meet the requirements of the College Board AP Computer Science Principles curriculum framework. It was originally developed as a university breadth course at the University of California, Berkeley, and has been extensively revised for high school use at EDC (Education Development Center).

The newest curriculum is at bjc.edc.org.

Why choose BJC?

  • BJC teaches strong fundamental concepts of programming.
    • In BJC students use Snap!, an accessible but full-featured block-based programming language, to explore concepts ranging from loops and variables up through recursion and higher-order functions.
  • BJC focuses on collaboration.
    • In BJC, students are encouraged to work in small groups, using pair programming for projects, and collaborating online to answer each others’ questions.
  • BJC assignments foster creativity and design thinking.
    • BJC includes project-centric labs, where groups are encouraged to build and design their own games, applications, and more. See Snap! examples!
  • BJC situates computing in the real world.
    • BJC units explore how computing is used in real-world applications, from Google Search algorithms to Big Data to today’s news.
  • BJC emphasizes that computing is for everyone, and is a matter of equity.
    • Computing is a vital skill in the 21st century; everyone needs to have input into new computing innovations. BJC emphasizes equity and engages students and teachers in discussing how we can promote it.
  • BJC is well-supported.
    • BJC teachers attend face-to-face professional development programs and have access to a wealth of online resources, including a repository of shared course materials, and weekly group calls.

For more information on how BJC compares to the general CS Principles framework, please see our comparison guide.

Who is teaching BJC?

The Beauty and Joy of Computing is taught across the country, with over 600 teachers from 41 states applying to attend our teacher preparation workshops. Teachers are also using our curriculum in Canada, Ireland, Guam, Hong Kong, South Korea, Indonesia, Senegal, Cape Verde, Nepal, Austria, Italy, New Zealand, the Philippines, and Germany.

How can I be part of BJC PD? - BJC PD Summer 2020 Application

We offer regional 5-day face to face summer professional development workshops for teachers intending to teach BJC within the next 2 school years (with priority to those teaching sooner).

We will release more application details in Winter 2020, but if you are interested, please leave us your contact information on our BJC Summer 2020 PD Interest Form so we can inform you when we have more details available.

How much does it cost?

Regional BJC Summer PD is offered in 2020 for a non-refundable $75 registration fee. Participating teachers may be eligible for reimbursement for reasonable expenses for travel, lodging, and meals.

How do I become a BJC Master Teacher?

If you are a BJC teacher, and would like to prepare to lead BJC workshops, email pd@bjc.berkeley.edu. Be sure to plan to attend our 2020 BJC “Train the Trainer” Master Teacher workshop in June 2020, and one of our 5-day in-person BJC workshops as a Teaching Assistant (TA).


If you have questions about BJC, please email us at pd@bjc.berkeley.edu and include your name, school name, and location.