FTCE-CS Preparation Course

Online PD course fully aligned to prepare CS teachers for the FTCE

CodeHS is now offering an online professional development course to help prepare teachers for the Florida Teaching Certification Examinations (FTCE) - Computer Science. The CodeHS FTCE-CS Preparation Course is the only course that covers 100% of the competencies designated for the exam.

  • 100% aligned to competencies

  • Flexible self-paced timeframe

  • In-course support with an instructor

Course Overview

Here is an outline of the course modules:

Primitive Types 5 hours

This unit introduces the Java programming language and the use of classes. Teachers will learn about three built-in data types and how to create variables, store values, and interact with those variables using basic operations.

Using Objects 6 hours

This unit introduces a new type of data: reference data. Reference data allows real-world objects to be represented in varying degrees specific to a programmer’s purpose. This unit builds on the ability to write expressions by introducing Math and String class methods.

Boolean Expressions and If Statements 5 hours

Algorithms are composed of three building blocks: sequencing, selection, and iteration. This unit focuses on selection, which is represented in a program by using conditional statements. Conditional statements give the program the ability to decide and respond appropriately and are a critical aspect of any nontrivial computer program.

Iteration 4 hours

This unit focuses on iteration using while and for loops. Boolean expressions are useful when a program needs to perform different operations under different conditions. Boolean expressions are also one of the main components in iteration. This unit introduces several standard algorithms that use iteration. Iteration is used when traversing data structures such as arrays, ArrayLists, and 2D arrays.

Writing Classes 6 hours

This unit will pull together information from all previous units to create new, user-defined reference data types in the form of classes. This unit focuses on identifying appropriate behaviors and attributes of real-world entities and organizing these into classes. The creation of computer programs can have extensive impacts on societies, economies, and cultures. The legal and ethical concerns that come with programs and the responsibilities of programmers are also addressed in this unit.

Arrays 3 hours

This unit focuses on data structures, which are used to represent collections of related data using a single variable rather than multiple variables. Using a data structure along with iterative statements with appropriate bounds will allow for similar treatment to be applied more easily to all values in the collection.

ArrayLists 5 hours

Data structures are helpful when storing multiple related data values. Arrays have a static size, which causes limitations related to the number of elements stored, and it can be challenging to reorder elements stored in arrays. The ArrayList object has a dynamic size, and the class contains methods for insertion and deletion of elements, making reordering and shifting items easier.

Inheritance 5 hours

This unit focuses on creating objects, calling methods on the objects created, and being able to define a new data type by creating a class are essential understandings before moving into this unit. In this unit, teachers will learn how to recognize common attributes and behaviors that can be used in a superclass and will then create a hierarchy by writing subclasses to extend a superclass.

Recursion 3 hours

Sometimes a problem can be solved by solving smaller or simpler versions of the same problem rather than attempting an iterative solution. This is called recursion, and it is a powerful math and computer science idea. In this unit, teachers will revisit how control is passed when methods are called, which is necessary knowledge when working with recursion. In this unit, teachers will learn how to write simple recursive methods and determine the purpose or output of a recursive method by tracing.

Computer Systems 3 hours

This unit explores the structure and design of the internet and other networks. It also considers how this design affects the reliability of network communication, the security of data, and personal privacy. Teachers will learn about the physical elements of networking such as switches and routers, the use of port numbers, ethernet and wireless devices. They will also distinguish types of networks and explain network protocols.

Digital Citizenship & Cybersecurity 3 hours

This unit includes topics on potential effects of our digital footprints and how to stay safe on the world wide web. Teachers will learn how to protect information from online risks, and how to find and cite quality resources online.

Teaching in a Blended Coding Class 3 hours

This unit dives into the blended classroom environment. Best practices and helpful approaches for incorporating online learning in traditional classroom settings will be presented and discussed.

Student Collaboration and Assessment Strategies 3 hours

In this unit, teachers incorporate collaborative programming best practices into their blended learning classroom to increase student collaboration with pair programming, student projects, ideation sessions, and white boarding. They also gain insight into assessing different types of problems, projects, and activities and how to provide constructive feedback to their students.

Course Format

Our FTCE prep course is offered entirely online and is made up of a series of learning modules that cover both the basics of programming and the pedagogy of teaching programming in a blended classroom. Each module is made up of short video tutorials, programming exercises, open-ended responses, debugging problems, and grading practice.

The course is designed for new and experienced teachers interested in taking the Florida Teaching Certification Examinations - Computer Science.

Alex Glamyan

Theatre Director and AP CSP Teacher at Cypress Lake High School Centre for the Arts

Joseph Fernandez

Robotics Instructor at Sunlake High School

What is FTCE?

Florida Teaching Certification Examinations - Computer Science K–12 (005) is a comprehensive exam designed to demonstrate that a teacher is highly competent in teaching computer science.

In June 2019, Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill to invest $10 million in high schools to train more computer science teachers in Florida.

FTCE CS Competencies Covered

This prep course covers all of the FTCE Computer Science skills and competencies including:

  • Computational thinking and problem solving

  • Data types and structures

  • Programming logic

  • Programming languages

  • Computer hardware, software, and networking

  • Historical aspects and social issues related to computer technologies

  • Computer science pedagogy