Lära programmering hands-on: förståelse för pedagogiska effekter och neurala processer

Tidsperiod: 2016-01-01 till 2018-12-31

Projektledare: Anna Eckerdal

Medarbetare: Michael Thuné, Maria Weurlander, Sara Bengtsson

Finansiär: Vetenskapsrådet

Bidragstyp: Projektbidrag

Budget: 8 010 000 SEK

The importance of students’ own active exploration for successful learning is seldom questioned. By now, a body of research supports the claim that hands-on activities facilitate learning, both of practical skills and of conceptual knowledge. However, the scientific basis for this is surprisingly weak. This 3-year project aims at filling some of these knowledge gaps.The project will study processes underlying hands-on (H-ON) and hands-off (H-OFF) learning using computer programming as model behavior. It has been proposed that learning facilitation does not necessarily come from the motor aspect of H-ON. We will thus study some possible explanations of the beneficial effects, i.e. attentional, emotional, and motivational aspects of hands-on in controlled behavioral experiments and with brain imaging. We will further study the role of H-ON from the students´ perspective in a programming course by means of qualitative methods such as classroom observations.Behavioural data obtained in the lab as well as neural activation will be statistically compared between participants who learned H-OH and H-OFF. These results will be put in the context of the qualitative data from the class room study testing the ecological validity of the data collected in the lab. The study is conducted by researchers in education and neuroscience at KI, KTH, and Uppsala University, for insight to neural principles, behavioral mechanisms, and classroom experiences of H-ON.