The project

Surveys of computer science and engineering instructors have indicated that two of the common reasons they do not adopt research-based instruction strategies are preparation time and lack of materials. This lack of materials to support research-based instruction was evident in Computer Architecture & Organization (AR). We are creating, piloting, revising, and sharing activities inspired by Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning (POGIL). POGIL is a research-based instruction strategy that comprises self-managed teams, development of process skills, and activities designed based on a theory of instruction called learning cycles.

An example of the learning cycle in an activity on truth tables. The exploration phase asks students to record the number of rows and inputs of truth tables, the concept invention phase asks them to infer the relationship of number of rows to number of inputs, and the application phase asks them to use this concept in a new problem.

The activities

These activities are under active development and in use with up to 120 students per semester.


Download the activities. (if link is broken, let us know and we’ll fix ASAP).

If you are using these materials in a course or are considering using them, we appreciate if you let us know.

Activities on architecture

Activities on architecture that are specific to MIPS

Activities on digital design and microarchitecture

What architectures are covered?

Activities above that have to do with architecture use MIPS. I also have ARM versions of these activities, but I have not uploaded them yet. If you are interested, please contact me.

Other information


The activities are licensed with the following:

Creative Commons License
Active Learning Activities for Computer Architecture and Organization by Brandon Myers is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available by contacting the author.



More information