This program is ideal for students who have an interest in computers and programming. The Academy for Technology and Computer Science offers a curriculum that provides students with a strong foundation in the core concepts of computer science, experience in a broad variety of programming skills and paradigms, and a focus on the application of programming to practical challenges.
ATCS students develop a strong foundational understanding of programming, computer architecture, software engineering practices, data structures and algorithms, theory of computation, and program analysis. Throughout their careers at BCA, students extend their skills in computing through projects and electives of their choice, including such offerings as processor design, web application development, computer security, game development, and artificial intelligence.
The specific programming languages and development tools in the curriculum change frequently with the times, but they are not the heart of what our students learn. Our real focus is on important, fundamental ideas in the field of computer science, not just the latest fad in technology. Even though the tools we use are always changing, students can have confidence that the important ideas they learn in ATCS will never become outdated or obsolete.
Ninth graders begin with an introductory course in computer programming. This course gently initiates students into a CS-approach to problem solving. No programming background is expected at the outset of this course, though accommodations are made for students who already have significant experience.
Tenth graders continue by taking AP Computer Science A, which develops the students' understanding of Object Oriented Programming, and also takes a deep dive into Data Structures and Algorithms, giving students command of a large number of central ideas to programming and programming practice.
Eleventh graders learn about a third programming paradigm: Functional Programming. They also turn their focus towards the mathematics and theoretical underpinnings of computer science, examining in depth how we can prove assertions about code, and exploring the fundamental capabilities (and limitations!) of computers.
Twelfth graders pull together everything that they've learned by building a real-world product known as a Capstone. In the process, they research new technologies, learn industry-level methodologies for client and team collaboration, and finally present their complete product to industry professionals.
Because of their strong backgrounds in computer science, ATCS students have placed highly in prominent national and international competitions such as The International Computer Science Olympiad, Panasonic Challenge, the National Center for Women & Information Technology, the Future Business Leaders of America Competition, the US Airforce CyberPatriot Competition, and the American Computer Science League.
ATCS students are well prepared for any college computing major such as Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Software Engineering, or Information Systems. Additionally, computers have worked their way into every facet of modern life. Even those students who decide not to pursue computer-related careers after high school still find that the technical skills they have acquired through the academy's curriculum prove immensely useful in any number of other fields.