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Predictors of success in a first programming course

Simon, Fincher, Sally, Robins, Anthony, Baker, Bob, Box, Ilona, Cutts, Quintin, de Raadt, Michael, Haden, Patricia, Hamer, John, Hamilton, Margaret, Lister, Raymond, Petre, Marian, Sutton, Ken, Tolhurst, Denise and Tutty, Jodi (2006). Predictors of success in a first programming course. In: Tolhurst, Denise and Mann, Samuel 8th Australian Computing Education Conference (ACE2006), Hobart, Tasmania, 16-19 January 2006.

Document type: Conference Paper
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Author Simon
Fincher, Sally
Robins, Anthony
Baker, Bob
Box, Ilona
Cutts, Quintin
de Raadt, Michael
Haden, Patricia
Hamer, John
Hamilton, Margaret
Lister, Raymond
Petre, Marian
Sutton, Ken
Tolhurst, Denise
Tutty, Jodi
Title Predictors of success in a first programming course
Conference Name 8th Australian Computing Education Conference (ACE2006)
Conference Location Hobart, Tasmania
Conference Dates 16-19 January 2006
Conference Publication Title Computing Education 2006: proceedings of the Eighth Australasian Computing Education Conference (ACE2006)
Editor Tolhurst, Denise
Mann, Samuel
Place of Publication Sydney , NSW
Publisher Australian Computer Society published in association with the ACM Digital Library
Publication Year 2006
Volume Number 52
ISBN 1920682341   (check CDU catalogue open catalogue search in new window)
ISSN 1445-1336   (check CDU catalogue open catalogue search in new window)
Start Page 189
End Page 196
Total Pages 8
HERDC Category E1 - Conference Publication (DEST)
Abstract This paper describes a multi-national, multi-institutional study that investigated introductory programming courses. Student participants were drawn from eleven institutions, mainly in Australasia, during the academic year of 2004. A number of diagnostic tasks were used to explore cognitive, behavioural, and attitudinal factorssuch as spatial visualisation and reasoning, the ability to articulate strategies for commonplace search and design tasks, and attitudes to studying. The results indicate that a deep approach to learning was positively correlated with mark for the course, while a surface approach was negatively correlated; spatial visualisation skills are correlated with success; a progression of map drawing styles identified in the literature has a significant correlation with marks; and increasing measures of richness of articulation of a search strategy are also associated with higher marks. Finally, a qualitative analysis of short interviews identified the qualities that students themselves regarded as important to success in programming.
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