PPIG 2011 - 23rd Annual Workshop
Class participation and shyness: affect and learning to program
Jon Rimmer, Judith Good, Eric Harris, Madeline Balaam
Abstract: This paper reports tentative results from a recent case study conducted with novice undergraduate computer programmers. These new computer science students completed a shyness scale questionnaire and were then observed using two kinds of technology that logged their self-rated emotions during their lab-based exercise classes whilst they learned to program using Java. Participants were then interviewed about their use of the technology, their experiences of learning to program and of asking questions within teaching and learning environments. The results here focus on the emerging themes concerning shyness and inhibitions that surround asking and answering questions. It highlights shyness as being a general part of the experience of a computer science undergraduate student, the importance of providing a suitable environment conducive to facilitating questions and answers, and considers how technology might be developed in the future to better support the needs of these students.