Matti Nelimarkka's textbook Computational Thinking and Social Science was recently published and the book launch event sparked a diverse discussion in the Helsinki Collegium lecture hall on March 8th. HSSH's visiting professors Mirko Schäfer from Utrecht University and Simon Lindgren from Umeå University also took part in the discussion.
"My textbook is one suggestion for the type of course that could provide an introduction to the wonderful world of computational methods. The conversation at the book launch brought out the issue that teaching is still unstructured. For example, we are not always sure what everyone should definitely go through, and which things should be part of an advanced course," Nelimarkka says.
The discussion also brought up common themes for the next edition of the textbook.
"The questions dealt with the reliability of the research and its new tools, but also stimulated a more in-depth reflection on the methods of data production. I do discuss reliability in the book, but epistemological considerations are still missing from this book. Perhaps by the time of the second edition, the scientific discussion will advance enough that we will dare to write something about epistemology as well," Nelimarkka hopes.
Matti Nelimarkka’s textbook Computational Thinking and Social Science – Combining Programming, Methodologies and Fundamental Concepts is now also available as an e-book and can be borrowed from the University library: https://helka.helsinki.fi/permalink/358UOH_INST/qatqfk/alma9934427732906253