TOPS - Collaboration and Competition to Stretch our Most Able Programming Novices

White, Su and Carter, Janet and Jamieson, Stephan and Efford, Nick and Jenkins, Tony (2007) TOPS - Collaboration and Competition to Stretch our Most Able Programming Novices. In: Frontiers In Education Conference - Global Engineering: Knowledge Without Borders, Opportunities Without Passports, 2007. FIE '07. 37th Annual. Proceeding Frontiers In Education Conference , 1-4. I.E.E.E, Milwaukee, WI pp. 1423-1427. ISBN 978-1-4244-1083-5. (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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Finding effective means of meeting students' varied needs during introductory programming classes is a perpetual challenge. Maintaining motivation and a sufficient level of engagement across an undergraduate group with diverse prior experience is not a simple task. Claims for successful approaches include forms of differentiated teaching and paired programming. Competitions run by professional bodies and the software industry are often used to provide further external motivation. This paper presents the outcomes of a collaborative initiative across four universities which drew on aspects of both these approaches. Academics in the partner institutions had already implemented specific practice to accommodate the variety of student needs. The TOPS project was designed to involve and extend students through the processes of devising and competing in an inter-university challenge. Analysis of the outcomes has enabled the development of further understanding and good practice in this important area.

Item Type: Conference or workshop item (Paper)
Uncontrolled keywords: active learning, programming, novices
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics (inc Computing science) > QA 76 Software, computer programming,
Divisions: Faculties > Science Technology and Medical Studies > School of Computing > Computing Education Group
Depositing User: Mark Wheadon
Date Deposited: 24 Nov 2008 18:04
Last Modified: 27 Jun 2009 10:58
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