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Work in progress - Comparing the use of a graphical programming language to a traditional text-based language to learn programming concepts

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5 Author(s)
Demel, J.T. ; Ohio State Univ., Enarson Hall ; Freuler, R.J. ; Brand, S.H. ; Morin, C.E.
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Programming has traditionally been taught using a text-based language where the students use an editor to type in language statements. The program is then compiled or interpreted using system commands. In these courses there are programming concepts that we want students to learn, such as declarations, math operations, loops, conditional statements, arrays, file manipulation, functions, etc. This project will attempt to determine the effectiveness of a graphical programming language (icon based) where a computer program is constructed with graphical icons. The test bed for this project will be Engineering H192 (Engineering Fundamentals and Laboratory II) at Ohio State. This course is the second course of a three-course sequence for first-year honors engineering students. The languages for this course are C/C++ and MATLAB. The course is taught to eight sections of 36 students. For a pilot section of H192, the C/C++ problems and the instructor notes will be re-written for the graphical icon development environment. The remaining sections will be the control group. A concept inventory will be completed by all students in the pilot and control sections at the beginning and at the end of the quarter. This work will begin in Winter Quarter 2007 and will be completed at the end of Winter Quarter 2008. This project is being funded by the National Instruments Foundation.

Published in:

Frontiers In Education Conference - Global Engineering: Knowledge Without Borders, Opportunities Without Passports, 2007. FIE '07. 37th Annual

Date of Conference:

10-13 Oct. 2007