Curriculum and Educator Programs

XSEDE pursues three main goals in supporting computational science education

We aim to:

  • Prepare the current and next generation of researchers, educators and practitioners.
  • Create a significantly larger and more diverse workforce in computational sciences
  • Inculcate the use of digital services as part of their routine practice for advancing discovery.

Our Services

List of competencies

XSEDE's Education program provides competencies for computational science, data science, and scientific computing skills, along with information on model programs that can be used to build or augment academic programs at colleges and universities throughout the United States.
See the current list of competencies here.

Curricula Assistance

We work with the faculty and administrators at institutions to integrate computational science into their curricula. These efforts include campus visits and half- or full-day workshops on computational science education as well as assistance in preparing new course and program proposals.


We offer professional development workshops on computational science education for faculty.
See examples of the workshops here.

Online Courses

Our shared full-semester online courses allow collaborating institutions to offer academic credit while taking advantage of XSEDE resources and instructional materials.

The first of these courses is Applications of Parallel Computers, taught by Jim Demmel at the University of California, Berkeley, in the spring semester. The content is located here.

HPC University

The HPC University website, sponsored by the XSEDE and Blue Waters projects, offers information on opportunities for students and faculty, an index of education and training materials on computational science topics, a list of existing computational science programs, and information on upcoming events, internships, and other opportunities.

PEARC Conference

The graph above is from an XSEDE14 modeling challenge project. It represents the concentration of a drug in the blood plasma, provided at the appropriate dose to have a therapeutic effect.

The Education program gives students the opportunity to attend the annual PEARC conference, participate in a variety of tutorials and workshops, and compete in a computational showcase their research in a poster session.

Campus Visits

XSEDE campus visits emphasize the need for computational science educaton and offer guidance concerning course content

Campus visits bring together faculty, students, and administrators to discuss the importance of having a workforce that is ready to use modeling and simulation, advanced data analysis, and visualization to explore problems in science and engineering, in both academic and non-academic settings.

A typical campus visit consists of a general presentation affirming the essentiality of computational science education and suggesting approaches to inserting the appropriate content into the curriculum. Discussions are held with faculty and administrators about the current curriculum. Some visits are also combined with a half-day workshop on computational thinking.

If your campus is interested in a visit from XSEDE, contact Kate Cahill, XSEDE Education program lead, at

Participating in Collaborative Online Courses

XSEDE sponsors full-semester online courses taught through collaborations with faculty at participating institutions.

The XSEDE courses consist of recorded lectures that can be watched by students independently or in their own local classrooms.  Each lecture comes with built-in quizzes that are used as part of the grading for the course.

In addition, several computer exercises are typically available that students can run on XSEDE computational resources to gain practical experience and have credit for the work recorded in their class grade.

The capstone assignment for a course often is a final project supervised by the local faculty members.

How Faculty Can Participate

If you are a faculty member interested in collaborating with XSEDE in this program, you will need to create a course in your own academic schedule that your local students can register for and receive credit. You and your students will then use the online materials and XSEDE resources to complete the course.

Local faculty who participate in the program meet periodically with the XSEDE instructors and staff to discuss schedules, suggestions for course improvement, and any questions related to operations. The local faculties are responsible for assigning final grades to all of their own students.

XSEDE provides access to the course material, technical support for the computer assignments, and access to XSEDE resources to complete the assignments.

For more information about the XSEDE Collaborative Online Courses program, contact Kate Cahill (