An Empirical Study of In-Class Laboratories on Student Learning of Linear Data Structures
Sarah Smith Heckman
Zu finden in: ICER 2015 (Seite 217 bis 225), 2015
Active learning increases student learning through collaborative engagement with materials during class time. A CS1.5 course at NC State, CSC216, uses active learning lectures involving short simplified think-pair-share in-class exercises to engage students with course materials. However, students still struggle with the course materials and several students do not successfully complete the course on their first attempt. To increase student learning and engagement, we conducted a quasi-experimental study incorporating in-class labs into two sections of CSC216 during the linear data structures unit in the Fall 2014 semester. Both sections completed in-class labs on the Java Collections Framework and iterators. One section completed in-class labs on array-based lists; the other section completed in-class labs on linked lists, in a counter-balanced study design. The active learning lecture delivery was used for the control section and an Exam was administered between the array-based list and linked list topics. Overall, we found no significant difference in student learning on array-based and linked lists as measured by the final exam. Students displayed half as much disengaged behavior during in-class labs and were five times more likely to ask for help from the teaching staff during in-class labs.
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