PPIG 2020 - 31st Annual Workshop
Doctoral Consortium
Purpose-first programming: Scaffolding programming learning for novices who care most about code’s purpose
Kathryn Cunningham
Abstract: Becoming “a programmer” is associated with gaining a deep understanding of programming language semantics. However, as more people learn to program for more reasons than creating software, their learning needs differ. In particular, end-user programmers and conversational programmers often care about code’s purpose, but don’t wish to engage with the low-level details of precisely how code executes. I propose the creation of scaffolding that allows these learners to interact with code in an authentic way, highlighting code’s purpose while providing support that avoids the need for low-level knowledge. This scaffolding builds on theories of programming plans.