Owen L. Astrachan
Professor of the Practice of Computer Science, Duke University
Astrachan is Professor of the Practice of Computer Science at Duke University
and the department's Director of Undergraduate Studies for Teaching and
Learning. He received his A.B. with distinction in Mathematics from Dartmouth
and M.A.T., M.S., and Ph.D degrees in computer science from Duke.
Professor Astrachan thinks and works on teaching and
providing resources for those teaching computer science and programming. He
chaired committees overseeing the changes in AP computer science from Pascal to
C++ and from C++ to Java. He received an NSF Career Award to study and improve
the use of software design patterns; and three other grants to improve teaching
in areas ranging from networks to bioinformatics. Not all these efforts have
been successful, but they have all been rewarding. Prof. Astrachan was a member
of the Duke programming team that placed fourth in the world in 1989, he has
coached the teams since then.
He received Duke's 1995 Robert B. Cox Distinguished
Teaching in Science Award; an Outstanding Instructor Award at the University of
British Columbia in 1998; and Duke's 2002 Richard K. Lublin award for "ability
to engender genuine intellectual excitement, ability to engender curiosity,
knowledge of field and ability to communicate that knowledge."