PPIG 2004 - 16th Annual Workshop
Towards the development of a cognitive model of programming; A software engineering proposal
Des Traynor, J. Paul Gibson
Abstract: Computer Science, particularly programming, is regarded as a very difficult subject to study and also to teach. Unlike other academic areas such as linguistics or physics, there is very little pedagogical research in the area. It is important to first understand how students learn, before attempting to teach them. The recent increase in the use of e-learning technologies for teaching computer science may be compromised by this lack of this fundamental knowledge. We propose the use of student profiling techniques combined with adaptive learning technologies to detect learning patterns and traits in students, thus recording how they learn. This empirical evidence can be used to reason about the development of a cognitive model of learning programming, potentially alleviating the aforementioned problem. Strong software engineering practices will control the development of this system and all experiments will be carried out using solid scientific methods.