A comparison of C, Matlab and Python as teaching languages in engineering


Fangohr, Hans, (2004) A comparison of C, Matlab and Python as teaching languages in engineering Bubak, Martin, van Albada, Geert Dick, Sloot, Peter M.A. and Dongarra, Jack J. (eds.) In Computational Science - ICCS 2004: 4th International Conference. Springer. 8 pp, pp. 1210-1217. (doi:10.1007/b98005).

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Description/Abstract

We describe and compare the programming languages C, MATLAB and Python as teaching languages for engineering students. We distinguish between two distinct phases in the process of converting a given problem into a computer program that can provide a solution: (i) finding an algorithmic solution and (ii) implementing this in a particular programming language. It is argued that it is most important for the understanding of the students to perform the first step whereas the actual implementation in a programming language is of secondary importance for the learning of problem-solving techniques. We therefore suggest to chose a well-structured teaching language that provides a clear and intuitive syntax and allows students to quickly express their algorithms. In our experience in engineering computing we find that MATLAB is much better suited than C for this task but the best choice in terms of clarity and functionality of the language is provided by Python.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1007/b98005
Additional Information: ISSN of series: 0302-9743
ISBNs: 3540221298 (print)
Venue - Dates: ICCS 2004: 4th International Conference, 2004-06-06 - 2004-06-09
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ePrint ID: 22811
Date :
Date Event
2004Published
Date Deposited: 30 Mar 2006
Last Modified: 16 Apr 2017 22:48
Further Information:Google Scholar
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/22811

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