Curriculum

Tunapanda Institute's curriculum is designed to provide an introduction to technology, design, and business. Many areas and topics are covered broadly, and the depth of instruction varies. The course is not designed to provide deep understanding in all of the topics, but to provide a level of familiarity that will allow graduates to work on their own or with employers in entry level positions. Human-centered design (HCD) methodologies are used to glean insights from graduates of the program, and after each cohort the curriculum is modified and updated to provide the most benefit for the incoming group of trainees. Soft skills and professional attitudes are emphasized throughout. We see great improvement in personal confidence as well as technical abilities in just 3 months.

Our principles of teaching and learning include:

  • Strong emphasis on growth mindset training and cultivation
  • Peer-to-peer instruction and learning by tinkering
  • Project-based learning
  • Frequent pitching and receiving public feedback from the peer group

Though there is a substantial overlap between many of the classes, the course can broadly be divided into the practical fields of technology, design, and business. Supplementary fields include mind & body (an exploration of topics ranging from psychology to yoga as well as culture (history of various technologies over the past few thousand years).

 

Technology

Purpose: To familiarize trainees with computers, accustom them to using technology in a professional environment and introduce them to the basics of computer programming. 

Primary topics:

  • Computer hardware
  • Networking
  • Computer programming
    • Scratch
    • KTurtle
    • JavaScript (including the p5.js library)
    • Python
    • MIT App Inventor
  • Command line interface
  • MySQL databases

Project example: be creative and learn technical skills by programming a browser-based video game in a small team.

 

Design

Purpose: To provide trainees with experience in graphic design and publication methodologies and tools. To enhance creativity through various facets of design such as drawing, editing images/videos, writing scripts, and changing the world through the third eye of design.

Primary topics:

  • Vector graphics with Inkscape
  • Raster graphics with Gimp
  • Web design and CMS management (WordPress)
  • Storytelling, scripting and storyboarding
  • Instructional design and content creation (H5P)
  • 3D modeling
  • Animation

Project example: design the visual branding materials for an imaginary business.

 

Digital Media

Purpose: To provide trainees with the tools to tell stories through digital media. To teach them how to create and edit media for maximal impact

Primary topics:

  • Photography and photo editing
  • Principles of filmography
  • Film editing
  • Audio recording and editing

Project examples: tell stories by creating a podcast and silent film.

 

Business and Communication

Purpose: To teach and facilitate adoption of business skills, help trainees understand and acknowledge the importance of good communication skills in business and technology.

Main topics:

  • Introduction to finance
  • Business model canvas
  • Customer segmentation
  • Pitching + pitch decks
  • Body Language
  • CV writing
  • Google toolbox
  • Design thinking
  • Personal branding

Project example: find a problem, validate the product by talking to potential customers, and develop a technical solution to that problem. Pitch “investors” and demonstrate a prototype.

 

Culture

Purpose: Enable people to understand and develop human rights and take part in global tech/design/business history and culture.

Main topics:

  • Open source software and creative commons
  • Copyright and attribution
  • History of knowledge transfer (libraries, printing press, communication technologies)
  • History of money
  • Cryptocurrency and Bitcoin

 

Mind & Body

Purpose: Enable trainees to better understand and utilize their minds and bodies to positively impact their lives and communities. To provide them with tools to improve personal and professional relationships.

Main topics:

  • Growth mindset
  • Creative problem solving
  • Psychology
  • Teamwork and conflict resolution
  • Introspection
  • Mindfulness
  • Yoga
  • Nutrition