The rapid integration of technology into our professional and personal lives has left many education systems ill-equipped to deal with the influx of people seeking computing education. To improve computing education, we are applying techniques that have been developed for other procedural fields. The present study applied such a technique, subgoal labeled worked examples, to explore whether it would improve programming instruction. The first two experiments, conducted in a laboratory, suggest that the intervention improves undergraduate learners’ problem solving performance and affects how learners approach problem solving. A third experiment demonstrates that the intervention has similar, and perhaps stronger, effects in an online learning environment with in-service K-12 teachers who want to become qualified to teach computing courses. By implementing this subgoal intervention as a tool for educators to teach themselves and their students, education systems could improve computing education and better prepare learners for an increasingly technical world.
Margulieux, Lauren; Catrambone, Richard; and Guzdial, Mark, "Employing Subgoals in Computer Programming Education" (2016). Learning Technologies Division Faculty Publications. 3.