A review of introductory programming research 2003–2017

Andrew Luxton-Reilly, Simon, Ibrahim Albluwi, Brett A. Becker, Michail Giannakos, Amruth N. Kumar, Linda Ott, James Paterson, Michael Scott, Judy Sheard, Claudia Szabo

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

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A broad review of research on the teaching and learning of programming was conducted by Robins et al. in 2003. Since this work there have been several reviews of research concerned with the teaching and learning of programming, in particular introductory programming. However, these reviews have focused on highly specific aspects, such as student misconceptions, teaching approaches, program comprehension, potentially seminal papers, research methods applied, automated feedback for exercises, competency-enhancing games, and program visualisation. While these aspects encompass a wide range of issues, they do not cover the full scope of research into novice programming. Some notable areas that have not been reviewed are assessment, academic integrity, and novice student attitudes to programming. There does not appear to have been a comprehensive review of research into introductory programming since that of Robins et al. It is therefore timely to conduct and present such a review in order to gain an understanding of the research focuses, to highlight advances in knowledge since 2003, and to indicate possible future directions for research. The working group will conduct a systematic literature review based on the guidelines proposed by Kitchenham et al. This research project is well suited to an ITiCSE working group as the synthesis and discussion of the literature will benefit from input from a variety of researchers drawn from different backgrounds and countries.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationITiCSE 2018 Companion: Proceedings Companion of the 23rd Annual ACM Conference on Innovation and Technology in Computer Science Education
Number of pages52
ISBN (Print)978-1-4503-6223-8
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2018


  • ITiCSE working group
  • CS1
  • introductory programming
  • novice programming
  • systematic literature review

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