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Wayne State University last month signed a $181,000 contract with University Camps of America to develop a computer camp that gives children more of the skills that they may eventually need to qualify for computer jobs.

The project--directed, appropriately enough, by an assistant professor of education named John Camp--will result this summer in five boarding-camp sessions in Lapeer, Mich. The cost of the two-week program is $795.

On the camp's agenda will be courses in computer applications in music, "robotics," word-processing, problem-solving, and programming.

Mr. Camp said that most computer camps and school programs have stressed programming and games to the exclusion of the more practical management and problem-solving applications.

An official at the Walden School in New York City, which evaluates summer camps, said the school would "tend to recommend the older camps'' to parents seeking summer computer instruction for their children. ''There are a lot of new camps that are jumping on the bandwagon" that have not fully developed their programs, she said.

More concrete advice comes from the recently published Computer Camp Book. The guide is available for $12.95 plus $2 for handling. Write Computer Camp Book, 8327 Sheridan Lane, Eden Prairie, Minn. 55344.

P. Kenneth Komoski, the executive director of Educational Products Information Exchange, will be the host of a new television show about computers next year.

The half-hour program, which will be broadcast monthly on Public Broadcasting Systems nationwide, will deal with both school and home use of computers. Panels of experts will gather to discuss how each month's developments in the computer industry affect personal-computer users.

A measure of the swelling demand for computers in schools comes from Pennsylvania.

The state's education department decided last year to spend $800,000 of its federal block-grant money on projects in high technology. When the application deadline approached last November, state officials said, schools had asked for about $18 million for more than 2,500 projects.

The department eventually added $330,000 to the block-grant money and accepted 208 proposals.

A private software manufacturer received accreditation early this month from the California Department of Public Instruction for a master's degree program in software engineering.

The Institute for Software Engineering's program--the only for-profit one of its kind in the U.S.--is designed to train data-processing professionals who are employed in government and industry. Among the topics to be covered: capacity planning, performance analysis, systems programming, systems analysis and design, project management, and applications-performance analysis.--ce

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