THE EMERGENT REQUIREMENTS FOR VISUAL TEACHING TOOLS FOR SUPPORTING INTRODUCTORY PROGRAMMING: A CASE STUDY OF BOTHO UNIVERSITY, FRANCISTOWN
Botho University (BOTSWANA)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN14 Proceedings
Publication year: 2014
Conference name: 6th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 7-9 July, 2014
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:Despite low levels of interest in programming by learners and perceptions that programming is difficult, it should be noted that programming’s importance has not diminished and should form core curricula of undergraduate computer science in education. A current challenge for the Computer Science department is to provide effective means of reducing attrition rates and enhance the potential of the department to recruit more students at Botho University. The purpose of the present study is to investigate how best students learning introductory programming can be supported and their interest cultivated by use of the ultimate visual support tools. This paper reports on the current problems faced by Botho University (Francistown). It first compares the attrition rates experienced by the Software Engineering and Network Engineering streams from January 2009 to August 2012. Secondly, the core requirements for ultimate visual tools for supporting novice programmers are presented together with a framework to standardize their design and development. Furthermore, the simple semiotic ladder model is proposed as a guide for restructuring the curricula for novice programmers. Finally, recommendations for further studies into the effects of the visual teaching aids for supporting introductory programming in object-oriented programming such as C sharp is recommended.
Keywords: Introductory programming, novice programmer, expert programmer, data-oriented approach, object-oriented programming, program, attrition.