Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-21 Thread Alan Blackwell
I may have missed it, but I don't think I saw a reference to the series of studies by Beckwith and Burnett on self-efficacy as a significant factor leading to gender differences in early programming experiences. If your experimental population includes a mix of males and females, you may find

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-21 Thread FERENC KOVACS
Blackwell alan.blackw...@cl.cam.ac.uk To: Stefano Federici sfeder...@unica.it Cc: Richard O'Keefe o...@cs.otago.ac.nz; Thomas Green green...@ntlworld.com; PPIG Listserve ppig-discuss-list@open.ac.uk; alan.blackw...@cl.cam.ac.uk Sent: Monday, 21 March, 2011 7:59:15 Subject: Re: URGENT: Testing

RE: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-21 Thread Enda Dunican
Message- From: Alan Blackwell [mailto:alan.blackw...@cl.cam.ac.uk] Sent: 21 March 2011 11:59 To: Stefano Federici Cc: Richard O'Keefe; Thomas Green; PPIG Listserve; alan.blackw...@cl.cam.ac.uk Subject: Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming I may have missed it, but I don't think I saw

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-21 Thread Bjorn Reese
On 2011-03-21 13:41, Enda Dunican wrote: I have been reading this discussion with interest. Marian's message provoked further thought. In recent months (as part of my involvement in sports coaching), I have read a number of books that put forward the idea that rather than being the cause of

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-20 Thread Stefano Federici
But consider that the run of participations you're about to make could just be a pilot. I understand. To clarify my test, I'm not going to compare Scratch/BYOB with my tool. I'm going to compare miniC (a minimal C implementation built on BYOB) vs regular C environments. I want to test if

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-20 Thread Stefano Federici
Dear All, I went through one of the suggested papers about self-efficacy (Self-efficacy and mental models in learning to program, Ramalingam et al, 2004). Unfortunately I'm at present totally unable to understand the final results (path analysis of the model): post Self-Efficacy (R2 =

RE: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-20 Thread Guzdial, Mark
That's a great question--really does sound fascinating, Stefano! I'm eager to hear about your results! My best recommendation is to take a few subjects and watch them use MiniC then traditional C. A good think-aloud protocol may give you a lot of insight into what's going on, e.g., when

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-19 Thread Stefano Federici
1) If you're trying to set up balanced groups for a study, then you only need to know about factors that will give a sizeable noise level if they are not balanced across groups. That's what I thought you wanted to do, am I right? Yes, this is my main goal. how good is the interface? If

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-19 Thread Thomas Green
On 19 Mar 2011, at 09:55, Stefano Federici wrote: what I claim is the easiest programming environment ever designed so far). Er, yes. You might need to restrict what you mean by 'programming' . I regard using spreadsheets as programming. But Scratch is very good at its job, to be

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-19 Thread Stefano Federici
I regard using spreadsheets as programming. Sure, I seen it the same way. Programming is creating general rules that will apply to different cases/situations. Is organized and logical thinking. the worst threat to generalisability is probably the risk of 'experimenter effect', where

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-19 Thread Marian Petre
Dear all, Please, please let's not re-invent the wheel -- or perhaps reiterate our own ignorance. We actually know very little about true indicators of programming aptitude. There are some correlations with spatial reasoning, and some with accurate

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-19 Thread Marian Petre
You might also have a look at David Greathead's doctoral dissertation (2009) An Investigation into the Influence of Student Personality Type and Other Factors on a Code Comprehension and Design Task in Java. http://homepages.cs.ncl.ac.uk/david.greathead/formal/GreatheadThesisDoubleSpaced.pdf

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-19 Thread Stefano Federici
Thanks! So many references but... if I can certainly start going through them, being you the experts I would really appreciate a start from this indication. If not, being my present need very urgent, I risk to take into account only a small fraction of these works, maybe not the most

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-19 Thread Stefano Federici
Thanks again. But, as I said before, 298 pages are really too much for me right now. If you could simply summarize his main ideas so that I can design a sound test to group my students, I would really appreciate it. Thanks in advance Stefano Citando Marian Petre m.pe...@open.ac.uk: You

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-19 Thread Stefano Federici
Thanks a lot again Short version: Look at the Rountree et al work for a summary of previous studies. Have a look at one of the BRACE papers. I will certainly do. Read a good book on experiment design, and take into account Thomas's advice about pilot studies. It's worth putting the

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-19 Thread Guzdial, Mark
I'm listening, but have little to add. I just point back to Marian's list -- those are the issues, Stefano. Gather what data you can and hope that your two groups are roughly equivalent on the variables you're hoping to control for. A bigger issue (again, reflecting back to Marian's list) is

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-18 Thread Thomas Green
Dear Stefano Since nobody else has replied yet, and you say it's urgent: YES: Mathematical and logical skills, yes. But I really don't think you need to do more than ask them what educational qualifications they have. Previous programming experience - the best criterion might be number

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-18 Thread scheila
Hi there!!! This is great material about Self-efficacy theory, also self-efficacy to programming 1. Bandura, A., ?Self-efficacy: Toward a unifying theory of behavioral change?, Psychological Review, Vol. 84, No. 2, 1977, pp. 191-215. 2. Karsten R. Roth R.M. /Computer self/-/efficacy: a

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-18 Thread Rebecca Yates
Are there other domains that may be relevent for an individual so to understand in advance if they have an inclination to computer programming? Possibly relevant: Mental models, Consistency and Programming Aptitude (Bornat, Dehnadi and Simon 2008). It's an investigation into whether

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-18 Thread Stefano Federici
YES: Mathematical and logical skills, yes. But I really don't think you need to do more than ask them what educational qualifications they have. Being them Italian students at the university level, having an educational qualification is not often a good indicator of what skills they

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-18 Thread Thomas Green
How deeply do you want to go into this? 1) If you're trying to set up balanced groups for a study, then you only need to know about factors that will give a sizeable noise level if they are not balanced across groups. That's what I thought you wanted to do, am I right? 2) If you want to

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-18 Thread Richard Bornat
On 18 Mar 2011, at 14:40, Stefano Federici wrote: Now I have an urgent need to know which (if any) are the specific tests that would allow me to group students that have an inclination to programming from students that have so such an inclination, and students that already know how to

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-18 Thread Richard Bornat
On 18 Mar 2011, at 17:28, Richard Bornat wrote: Those who use the wrong model or no model can't program, whether or not they say they can I meant, of course, can't program _yet_. Richard Bornat -- The Open University is incorporated by Royal Charter (RC 000391), an exempt charity in

Re: URGENT: Testing Inclination to Programming

2011-03-18 Thread Richard O'Keefe
Re self-efficacy, read Unskilled and Unaware of it: How Difficulties in Recognizing One's Own Incompetence Lead to Inflated Self-Assessments Kruger and Dunning Psychology, 2009, 1, 30-46 Abstract People tend to hold overly favorable views of their