Levels of active learning in programming skill acquisition: From lecture to active learning rooms

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

3 Scopus citations


In this paper, we perform a high-level comparison between different modifications of an entry-level programming course in computer science. The course iterations feature an online tutoring component paired with (i) textbook/traditional lecture/lab, as well as (ii) active learning in a specially designed active learning room, and (iii) active learning in a computer laboratory, both featuring an online textbook. We find that shifting the course format to active learning alone does not necessarily improve learner performance across all commonly graded course activities and might even result in lower performances in certain categories. Simply replacing traditional classroom settings with a laboratory in which to perform hands-on exercises might not be sufficient, as performance overall declined. Interestingly, we do not notice a very pronounced impact of lower performance and increased failing rates on student attitudes, as measured by student opinion scores.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFIE 2017 - Frontiers in Education, Conference Proceedings
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9781509059195
StatePublished - Dec 12 2017
Event47th IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE 2017 - Indianapolis, United States
Duration: Oct 18 2017Oct 21 2017

Publication series

NameProceedings - Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE
ISSN (Print)1539-4565


Conference47th IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE 2017
Country/TerritoryUnited States


  • Computer science education
  • Integrated textbooks
  • Learner performance
  • Programming


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