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ERIC Number: ED527516
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 258
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1240-6529-8
Using Problematizing Ability to Predict Student Performance in a First Course in Computer Programming
Schuyler, Stanley TenEyck
ProQuest LLC, D.Sc. Dissertation, Robert Morris University
Problem solving can be thought of in two phases: the first phase is problem formulation and the second solution development. Problem formulation is the process of identifying a problem or opportunity in a situation. Problem Formulation Ability, or PFA, is the ability to perform this process. This research investigated a method to assess PFA and use it to predict student performance in a first course in computer programming. The motivation for this study was based on reports that 40% to 50% of students enrolled in their first course in computer programming performed below average (less than 70%) or withdrew. Since the 1970s, a number of studies were published, on more that 50 factors, to predict student performance in introductory computer programming courses. Several studies identified factors that could explain between 31% and 45% of the variance in students' performance. A majority of studies inferred from their results that a student's problem solving ability was a key factor. However, assessing this ability prior to taking a course was difficult. The primary purpose of this research was to explore a method to assess PFA and investigate if the PFA assessment was a predictive factor in learning computer programming. The results support the conclusion that PFA could be assessed and it was an effective predictor of performance. Additionally, an assessment of the learning techniques a student uses was also determined to be an effective predictor. Together, they explained 48% of the variance in the performance of students taking their first programming course. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A