PPIG 2016 - 27th Annual Workshop
Work In Progress Report: Tracking the Novice Programmer
J. Thomas Allen, Temi Bidjerano
Abstract: Computer science educators agree that, for many beginners, learning to write computer programs is very difficult. And, in spite of our best efforts at remedying the situation, many novice programmers still struggle. We report some preliminary findings from our study that seeks to understand what sort of preconceptions novices use when learning to program. Our early results show unsurprisingly that student programmers can be separated distinctly into the haves and have-nots. This separation seems based on mastery of programming skills that are likely developed in an incremental fashion that suggests a hierarchy. But, in spite of these findings, we have also noted that predicting whether a student can correct or debug a program does not seem to depend on their success in these other areas.