Presentation Title

Splat! Novice Debugging in Block-Based and Hybrid Environments

Faculty Mentor

Kristy Boyer

Start Date

23-11-2019 12:45 PM

End Date

23-11-2019 1:00 PM

Location

Markstein 303

Session

oral 3

Type of Presentation

Oral Talk

Subject Area

engineering_computer_science

Abstract

Debugging is an important skill for novice programmers to master, but many students struggle to learn how to debug due in part to difficulty with program syntax. Block-based environments provide an alternative to traditional textual programming that reduces syntax errors, and recently hybrid block-based/textual environments have become more common. This poster presents preliminary research to understand how novice debugging strategies differ between block-based and hybrid environments. We assigned seven participants to debug four programs within one of the two environments and conducted interviews about their debugging approaches. Thematic analysis of interview responses suggest that students adjusted their strategies based on their prior experience with textual environments. By understanding novice programmers’ strategies in these environments, the field can move toward more effectively supporting productive strategies.

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Nov 23rd, 12:45 PM Nov 23rd, 1:00 PM

Splat! Novice Debugging in Block-Based and Hybrid Environments

Markstein 303

Debugging is an important skill for novice programmers to master, but many students struggle to learn how to debug due in part to difficulty with program syntax. Block-based environments provide an alternative to traditional textual programming that reduces syntax errors, and recently hybrid block-based/textual environments have become more common. This poster presents preliminary research to understand how novice debugging strategies differ between block-based and hybrid environments. We assigned seven participants to debug four programs within one of the two environments and conducted interviews about their debugging approaches. Thematic analysis of interview responses suggest that students adjusted their strategies based on their prior experience with textual environments. By understanding novice programmers’ strategies in these environments, the field can move toward more effectively supporting productive strategies.