PPIG 2004 - 16th Annual Workshop
Doctoral Consortium
Roles of Variables and Strategic Programming Knowledge
Pauli Byckling
Abstract: Roles of variables [6] are a new concept that can be utilized, e.g., in teaching programming to novices. Roles represent programming knowledge on a higher level than simple programming language knowledge. Role knowledge has traditionally been tacit but it can be made explicit and thus help students to understand the ways variables are used in programs. Roles are easy to adopt in teaching, too: in one study, computer science teachers learned in less than an hour to recognize roles in their typical uses with 90 % accuracy.
The main issue of my research work and the subject of my doctoral thesis will be to describe the effects of the role concept in the emergence of strategic programming knowledge, i.e., to find answers in questions like "how does the role concept effect in the progression of programming methods and comprehension strategies in programming at the novice level". Another research question is to study the effects of the role concept in strategic programming knowledge among expert programmers.