Using collaboration to overcome disparities in Java experience

Colleen M. Lewis, Nathaniel Titterton, Michael Clancy

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

The lower-division CS curriculum at the University of California, Berkeley includes a version of CS 2 that is intended to introduce students to Java as well as data structures and programming methodology. Some students in the course already have Java experience. In one course offering, students without previous Java experience received final grades that were 0.27 standard deviations below their peers who already had some Java experience (d=0.27, p<0.05). In a subsequent offering, the instructor adopted course policies and teaching strategies that made student collaboration more frequent in hopes that students without Java experience could learn from their peers with Java experience. In this highly-collaborative offering, there were no statistically significant differences in average final grades between students with and without Java experience (d=0.12, p>0.1). A smaller percentage of students dropped the highlycollaborative offering than the less-collaborative offering. This decrease in attrition was most notable for female students, from 37 percent to 5 percent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationICER'12 - Proceedings of the 9th Annual International Conference on International Computing Education Research
Pages79-86
Number of pages8
DOIs
StatePublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes
Event9th Annual International Conference on International Computing Education Research, ICER 2012 - Auckland, New Zealand
Duration: Sep 9 2012Sep 11 2012

Publication series

NameICER'12 - Proceedings of the 9th Annual International Conference on International Computing Education Research

Conference

Conference9th Annual International Conference on International Computing Education Research, ICER 2012
Country/TerritoryNew Zealand
CityAuckland
Period9/9/129/11/12

Keywords

  • Attrition
  • Collaboration
  • Competition
  • CS 2
  • Gender
  • Group work
  • Lab-centric instruction
  • Pair programming
  • Programming experience
  • Satisfaction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science (miscellaneous)
  • Education

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