Analyzing the Quality of Students Interaction in a Distance Learning Object-Oriented Programming Discipline

Elizabeth Simão Carvalho
Interdisciplinary Journal of e-Skills and Lifelong Learning  •  Volume 11  •  2015  •  pp. 085-099
Teaching object-oriented programming to students in an in-classroom environment demands well-thought didactic and pedagogical strategies in order to guarantee a good level of apprenticeship. To teach it on a completely distance learning environment (e-learning) imposes possibly other strategies, besides those that the e-learning model of Open University of Portugal dictates. This article analyses the behavior of the students of the 1st cycle in Computer Science while interacting with the object-oriented programming (OOP) discipline available to them on the Moodle platform. Through the evaluation of the level of interaction achieved in a group of relevant selected actions by the students, it is possible to identify their relevancy to the success of the programming learning process. Data was extracted from Moodle, numerically analyzed, and, with the use of some charts, behavior patterns of students were identified. This paper points out potential new approaches to be considered in e-learning in order to enhance programming learning results, besides confirming a high level of drop-out and a low level of interaction, thus finding no clear correlation between students’ success and the number of online actions (especially in forums), which reveals a possible failure of the main pillar on which the e-learning model relies.
eLearning, student’s behavior, distance learning of programming language
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