Three Dulwich College Beijing (DCB) Senior School students, Eddy J (Year 11), Duncan L (Year 11), and Frank Y (Year 9), represented the College at the American Computer Science League (ACSL) and won multiple prestigious awards, including the Global Individual Silver Award, the National Team Gold Award, the National Individual Gold Award, the National Team Top Scores Award, the National Individual Top Scores Award, and the Perfect Score Award.

The American Computer Science League (ACSL) was founded in 1978 and has developed into an international computer science competition, with over 500 teams participating from the United States, Canada, Europe, and Asia last year. ACSL has partnered with ASDAN China to administer the ACSL contests in China, and top students of the contests are invited to participate in ACSL's end-of-year finals.

The three Senior School students formed a team representing DCB last year and spent months working together to qualify in each round of the competition. They have thus successfully gone through all four successive rounds of the competition and achieved fantastic results at the All-Star Contest, the end-of-year finals in August 2021.

ACSL winners

Looking back at the experience, Eddy J summarised his takeaway, noting that "the main quality I had to demonstrate during this contest was critical thinking. Since there were so many questions to answer in such limited time, I had to ensure that what I was doing was correct the first time around, otherwise, I wouldn't have had enough time to go back and check questions I had to work on.”

Frank Y echoed Eddy, emphasizing, “What this experience has taught me is that hard work pays off, that the hours I’ve put into the challenge helped me achieve this. During the multiple rounds of the contest, a quality I had to demonstrate was to stay calm under pressure and the continuously ticking clock and to do the best I could. I’m also honoured to have worked with such strong teammates who are both older and more experienced than me.”

Congratulations also to the DCB teachers who supported the students, Mr Martin Mathieson, Mr Jose Tumba, and Mr Kyle Douglas. Their knowledge and passion for Computer Science certainly guided and motivated the students to their success. 

Ms Carol Liu, Eddy’s mother, commented, “their (the students’) achievements should be credited to DCB’s strong team of technical instructors and the great environment they have been providing to the dedicated students.” Ms Liu also sends encouragement to all the DCB students: “Never give up on doing things you’re passionate about. If you fail, it’s not the end of the world. Learn from your failures and be able to stand up taller and stronger: you will grow to become a much better person. Appreciate these struggles and failures: they are part of the gifts the world gives to your life to let you grow.”

DCB has been putting great effort into using the latest information and communication technologies to enhance learning. “At DCB, we have a comprehensive Technology curriculum that aims to develop computational thinking and problem-solving skills for our students. This begins in the Early Years where students develop STEM skills through programmable robotics. In Junior School, computational thinking and STEM are integrated into conceptual units of study driven by real-world problems. Senior School students complete 8 Technology projects throughout Key Stage 3 and have the option to choose Computer Science for IGCSE and IB”, introduces Yosef Karasik, Director of Educational Technology and Innovation at DCB. “We offer our students opportunities to test their skills in internationally renowned competitions such as BEBRAS, OUCC and USACO. In addition to the curriculum, we have a plethora of technology ECAs ranging from competitive programming and game design to advanced AI and robotics clubs. We believe that it is important to prepare our students for an everchanging world, where Technology and AI will be prevalent”.

The students received their award certificates from DCB Head of College Anthony Coles. They will be the first three students to be recognised on the newly launched Technology Wall of Fame in SE21, the centre of STEM creativity and innovation at DCB.

ACSL winners with Anthony Coles