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07:00-08:30 Session 16: Event: Breakfast with BlueJ and Greenfoot – Introducing Greenfoot 3, BlueJ 4, and Stride
Neil Brown (University of Kent, United Kingdom)
Location: 6B
Michael Kölling (University of Kent, United Kingdom)
Amjad Altadmri (University of Kent, United Kingdom)
Neil Brown (University of Kent, United Kingdom)
Ian Utting (University of Kent, United Kingdom)
Breakfast with BlueJ and Greenfoot – Introducing Greenfoot 3, BlueJ 4, and Stride

ABSTRACT. Within the last year, new major versions of both the BlueJ and Greenfoot environments have been released. These versions bring some major enhancements and features to both systems, most importantly the addition of a new language, Stride. Incorporating characteristics from both text-based and block-based systems, Stride offers novel edit interactions with the potential to significantly benefit novice learners of programming. Designed with a transition to text-based systems in mind as a progression path, it provides an ideal entry point or stepping stone from block-based programming systems. In addition to the new editor, both systems offer a range of other enhancements, such as continuous edit-time error checking, improved error message display, GIT support in BlueJ and the ability to develop JavaFX applications. We will introduce and demonstrate the new features of both systems, and (because it’s an early start) provide an informal buffet breakfast for attendees.

08:30-10:00 Session 18: Friday Plenary & Keynote by Gail Chapman (Exploring Computer Science)
Michael Caspersen (Aarhus University, Denmark)
Stephen Edwards (Virginia Tech, USA)
Location: 6E
Gail Chapman (Exploring Computer Science, USA)
Inspire, Innovate, Improve! What does this mean for CS for All?
SPEAKER: Gail Chapman
10:00-10:45 Session 19A: Break, Exhibits & Demos
Sarah Heckman (North Carolina State University, USA)
Location: 4A
Matthew Peveler (Rennselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA)
Jeramey Tyler (Rennselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA)
Samuel Breese (Rennselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA)
Barbara Cutler (Rennselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA)
Ana Milanova (Rennselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA)
Submitty: An Open Source, Highly-Configurable Platform for Grading of Programming Assignments

ABSTRACT. Submitty is an open source programming assignment submission system from the Rensselaer Center for Open Source Software (RCOS) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI). Students can submit their code by drag-and-drop, zip upload, or version control, where it is then tested with a highly configurable and customizable automated grader. Students receive immediate feedback from the grader, and can resubmit to correct errors as needed. Through an online interface, TAs can access detailed grading results and supplement the automated scores with manual grading (numeric and written feedback) of overall program structure, good use of comments, reasonable error checking, etc. and any non-programming components of the assignment. The instructor can also configure the system to allow for a configurable late day policy on a per assignment and per student basis. We currently use Submitty in eight different courses (spanning from introductory through advanced topics) serving over 1500 students and 35+ instructors and TAs each week. We will present a range of “case study” assignment configurations, from simple through complex, using a variety of different automated grading methods including per-character and per-line output difference checkers, external unit testing frameworks (such as JUnit), memory debugging tools (Valgrind and DrMemory), code coverage (e.g., Emma), static analysis tools, and custom graders. Submitty can be customized per test case as appropriate to apply resource limits (running time, number of processes, output file size, etc.) and to display or hide from students the program output, autograding results, and testing logs.

Brian Broll (Vanderbilt University, USA)
Akos Ledeczi (Vanderbilt University, USA)
Distributed Programming with NetsBlox is a Snap!
SPEAKER: Brian Broll

ABSTRACT. NetsBlox is a new collaborative learning environment extending Snap! with a few carefully selected abstractions that enable students to create distributed applications. In today's interconnected world, it will become increasingly important to have a basic understanding of computer networking and distributed computation yet these topics are rarely covered in K-12 curricula. Conversely, NetsBlox makes distributed programming accessible to beginner programmers using its simple yet powerful visual programming primitives, an intuitive user interface and a sophisticated cloud-based infrastructure. This technology demonstration will introduce the environment and demonstrate its utility in creating multi-player games as well as client-server applications that access public domain scientific data sources and display them on top of an interactive Google Maps background. Moreover, the tool enables students to work together on the same project from different computers similarly to how Google Docs operate. This collaboration facility will also be demonstrated. This work is supported by an NSF EAGER and STEM+C awards and a Vanderbilt TIPs grant. More information, including a few YouTube videos of NetsBlox in action, are available at

10:00-12:00 Session 19B: Poster Session #1
J. Philip East (University of Northern Iowa, USA)
Location: 4A
Carl Alphonce (University at Buffalo, USA)
Jacob Condello (University at Buffalo, USA)
Bina Ramamurthy (University at Buffalo, USA)
Simran Singh (University at Buffalo, USA)
Building Tools, Gathering Data: Precursors for Assessing Students’ Programming Process
SPEAKER: Carl Alphonce

ABSTRACT. Computer programming is a process. Successful programming involves incrementally building and testing a solution. Students’ ability to program is typically determined by an assessment of the end-product of a programming session rather than an examination of the actual process students are engaged in. A prerequisite to assessing a student’s programming process is having access to that process. While direct one-on-one observation of students while they code has the potential to yield high-quality data, it does not scale well to large classes. One scalable approach is to automatically capture edit events through IDE instrumentation, and programmatically assess the resulting data. In this poster we report on our work to date in developing and deploying a plug-in for Eclipse’s Java Development Tools (JDT), explore the data we have collected to date, compare our results with those reported in previous work, and discuss possible directions for future work in using this data for assessment of students’ programming process.

Samuel Breese (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA)
Ana Milanova (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA)
Barbara Cutler (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA)
Using Static Analysis for Automated Assignment Grading in Introductory Programming Classes
SPEAKER: Samuel Breese

ABSTRACT. Student experience in introductory computer science classes can be enhanced by applying static analysis techniques to automatically grade assignments. At Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), introductory computer science classes (using Python) exceed 650 students in size. As resources are limited, it is infeasible to have teaching staff individually examine each student’s answer for small in-lecture exercises; however, qualitative data regarding student code independent from execution is still valuable (and in some cases required) to assess progress. When static analysis utilities were made available to instructors and integrated with automatic assignment testing, instructors were able to judge student performance and provide feedback at a scale that would otherwise be infeasible.

There are clear advantages to applying static analysis techniques in comparison to less sophisticated methods (e.g. regular-expression based search). For one, students are unable to subvert grading by placing certain keywords within comments or string literals. Static analysis can also be applied to easily grade students on patterns that would be nontrivial to detect using a more naive method, for example in enforcing a rule that all member variables of a C++ class must be private, or verifying that a function takes the appropriate number and type of arguments.

Quinn Burke (College of Charleston, USA)
Madeleine Schep (Columbia College, USA)
Travis Dalton (Columbia College, USA)
CS for SC: A Landscape Report of K-12 Computer Science in South Carolina
SPEAKER: Quinn Burke

ABSTRACT. The goal of the CS for SC Landscape Report is to examine the current state of computing education on the K-12 level within the state of South Carolina. Building off of the 2007 South Carolina’s Computing Competitiveness Report, the report more fully examines the fundamental questions of who? what? and where? in terms how computer science education has developed in the state over the past nine years. Results are reported in this poster based on a survey of 158 K-12 educators and ten follow-up interviews with leading computing teachers and program administrators from around the state.

This research is funded through a generous grant through the National Science Foundation Broadening Participation in Computing Alliance (NSF Award No. 1228352, 1228355) administered through Expanding Computing Education Pathways (ECEP).

Jeffrey Bush (University of Colorado, USA)
Susan Miller (University of Colorado, USA)
Analysis of the Association Between Previous Computer Science Experience, Gender, Ethnicity and Privilege Gaps in Motivation for Computer Science as Observed in a Large Scale Survey of Middle School Students
SPEAKER: Jeffrey Bush

ABSTRACT. Previous experience correlates to student retention in computer science at the secondary and undergraduate levels, its impact in middle school is less well understood. Previous research findings from a University of Colorado large scale survey of students’ conceptions of computer science have shown that there is a pervasive gender gap in middle school student confidence and interest in computer science. This study conducts a follow up investigation, analyzing data from fall 2014 to spring 2016 (n=6,128), using multiple regression analysis to investigate how student responses to motivational items concerning both confidence and interest vary by gender, previous experience with computer science, minority status, and having a computer at home. Results show statistically significant associations (p<0.001) between the outcomes of both confidence and interest and each of the four predictors. Gender is the largest predictor of both confidence and interest. Females are associated with 7.35 percentage points lower agreement to confidence items and 14.3 percentage points lower agreement to interest items. Students who have previous experience with computer science report 4.58 points higher confidence, equivalent in size to the effect of having a computer at home and twice the size as the minority gap of 2.38 lower confidence points. For interest, previous experience is associated with 2.32 percentage points higher agreement, smaller but still significant, about half the size as the minority gap of 5.26 points. These findings imply that previous experience with computer science at the middle school level helps to reduce the motivational gaps by gender, privilege, and ethnicity.

Christa Cody (North Carolina State University, USA)
Behrooz Mostafavi (North Carolina State University, USA)
Investigating the Impact of Unsolicited Next-Step and Subgoal Hints on Dropout in a Logic Proof Tutor
SPEAKER: Christa Cody

ABSTRACT. We have been incrementally adding data-driven methods into the Deep Thought logic tutor for the purpose of creating a fully data-driven intelligent tutoring system. Our previous research has shown that the addition of data-driven hints, worked examples, and problem assignment can improve student performance and retention in the tutor. In this study, we investigate the influences two unsolicited hint types have on students’ ability to complete the tutor. We have used data collected from two test conditions: one with unsolicited next step hints (NSH) presenting the immediate next step of a logic proof to a student’s current proof-solving state, and the other with unsolicited subgoal hints (SGH) presenting a step of a logic proof two or three steps of the student’s current state. Our results show that students who received unsolicited SGH had more interactions within the tutor and skipped more problems. Furthermore, the SGH group had a significantly higher dropout percentage. These results suggest that hint types can affect student behavior and the ability to learn the material. Therefore, determining what type of hint to give during problem solving is important to the learning process and should be taken into consideration when designing an intelligent tutoring system (ITS). Future work will include using historical student data to determine the best hint type to give a student by analyzing student behavior and identifying the most effective hint type for the behavior being exhibited.

Yuli Deng (Arizona State University, USA)
Dijiang Huang (Arizona State University, USA)
Chun-Jen Chung (Athena Network Solutions, USA)
ThoTh Lab: A Personalized Learning Framework for CS Hands-on Projects
SPEAKER: Yuli Deng

ABSTRACT. Personalized learning is often referred to a new learning approach by taking individual parameters such as learning preferences, abilities, skills and knowledge into account. In this poster, we present a personalized learning solution for computer networks, system, and cybersecurity focusing on hands-on projects. The personalized learning models are established in ThoTh Lab - a cloud-based hands-on virtual laboratory for Computer Science (CS) education. ThoTh Lab is a remote web-accessing virtual laboratory and it was originally designed to reduce lab management overhead for instructors and improve learning experience for CS students. By introducing new personalized learning capabilities, we can transfer ThoTh Lab from a traditional hands-on lab resource provisioning system to an active personalized e-learning platform for CS education. The system can track and assess students’ hands-on projects’ activities to monitor students’ lab performance, and then provide intelligent suggestions or resources to improve students’ learning experience and outcomes. Our personalized learning framework is distinguished from existing approaches by three salient features: (1) it is built into a hands-on and virtualized laboratory environment usually involving multiple virtual computers and their interconnections, (2) it has incorporated into a wide range of learners’ characteristics such as individuals’ learning style, prior knowledge and learning effectiveness, and it is designed to be able to include new and customizable features, (3) it uses machine learning approaches to model student characteristics during the learning process.

Brennen Frisque (University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, USA)
Ankur Chattopadhyay (University of Wisconsin - Green Bay, USA)
Conducting A Social Constructivist Epistemology for CS1 and CS2 Students - A Research Case Study

ABSTRACT. Social construction based learning approaches have been employed in CS education, but none of them has actually evaluated the effectiveness of the student reflection process, which is a key part of the action learning in these approaches. In the social constructivist pedagogy, reflection plays a vital role in the learner’s assimilation and accommodation process that builds upon the student’s prior knowledge. Since social constructivism recommends inquiry based knowledge building, we pursue a process of student reflection that uses a unique, non-traditional method of social construction based question-answer dialogue for engaging CS1 and CS2 students in a reflective assessment before the actual action learning cycle begins. This process of reflection helps students analyze their conceptual understandings and identify problems or limitations within their respective cognitive models prior to the actual process of knowledge refining or creation. In order to ensure that students have successfully reflected upon their conceptual beliefs, we then carry out a software tool based assessment to automate the cognitive debugging and identification process of conceptual gaps. We then compare the answers from the social interaction based reflective assessment with the results obtained through the software based traditional assessment in order to validate the student reflection process in the form of a social constructivist epistemology. Our research experiment presents an authentic and relevant problem for students to address within the social constructivist context. Results from our comparative analysis show evidence of confirming the validity of student conceptual beliefs by evaluating the knowledge discovery process through an epistemic investigation.

Kinnis Gosha (Morehouse College, USA)
Kamal Middlebrook (Morehouse College, USA)
Broadening Participation Research Project: Exploring Computing Careers through a Virtual Career Exploration Fair Using Embodied Conversational Agents
SPEAKER: Kinnis Gosha

ABSTRACT. Research suggests that the African American population is continuously growing in America, yet African Americans are disproportionately represented when it comes to undergraduate and graduate degrees and careers in computing. Embodied conversational agents (ECAs) have been developed as tools to disseminate information about various jobs in computing. The ECAs used in this study are African American men and women in those fields. This paper is about a pilot study conducted at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia to assess user satisfaction and effectiveness of the website which houses those ECAs. Twenty-two male undergraduates who were pursuing a degree in computer science participated in a study where they engaged the ECAs to learn more about various computing careers. The results from the survey that was used to assess user satisfaction and effectiveness of the website show that the majority of individuals who use the website will find it easy to use and helpful and will consider a career in computing in the future. This pilot study will be used to conduct another study that will focus on African American, male and female high school students and individuals interested in obtaining a graduate degree and/or career in computing.

Kathleen Haynie (Haynie Research and Evaluation, USA)
Jeff Gray (University of Alabama, USA)
Sheryl Packman (Gator Analytics, USA)
Carol Crawford (A+ College Ready, USA)
Mary Boehm (A+ College Ready, USA)
Jonathan Corley (University of West Georgia, USA)
A Final Project Report on CS4Alabama: A Statewide Professional Development Initiative for CS Principles

ABSTRACT. This poster describes how this project has induced teacher preparation and broadened student participation in Computer Science Principles throughout Alabama from 2013-2016. We will describe our professional development (PD) model, gain for participating instructors, results of CS Principles course implementations, and student engagement and outcomes. A statewide and scalable “Teacher Leader” model of professional development was implemented throughout the project. In person training was coupled with on-line course content, geographically proximal teacher groups, and periodic teacher hangouts. Teachers in each cohort collaborated together on developing course content and pedagogy, fostered by peer leaders from earlier cohorts. Instructors encouraged and engaged their students; student agreed that the learning environments supported diversity. Students gained significantly in core computer science content (i.e., abstraction and algorithms) as well as computational thinking practices. Female students showed robust gains on a number of indicators (including higher course grades than males); under-represented minority students showed positive gains in content knowledge. The majority of students said they were likely or possibly likely to pursue computer science in college, and that taking CS Principles impacted their decisions.

David Hovemeyer (York College of Pennsylvania, USA)
Arto Hellas (University of Helsinki, Finland)
Andrew Petersen (University of Toronto, Mississauga, Canada)
Jaime Spacco (Knox College, USA)
Progsnap: Sharing Programming Snapshots for Research

ABSTRACT. Recent years have seen increasing interest in using programming snapshot data for education research. One barrier to such research, especially for studies involving data from multiple institutions, is that the data is in a wide variety of native formats, and those formats may not be conducive to automated analysis. To overcome this barrier, we propose a structured data model and archival data format called Progsnap ( Progsnap is designed to be a neutral export format, and is currently supported by two open-source programming exercise systems. An open source Python library makes it easy to automate analysis of Progsnap datasets.

Sarah Hug (Colorado Evaluation &amp; Research Consulting, USA)
Enrico Pontelli (New Mexico State University, USA)
Raena Cota (New Mexico State University, USA)
Suzanne Eyerman (Colorado Evaluation & Research Consulting, USA)
Learning and Identity in YWIC- An Analysis of Program Implementation and Design as Promoting Agency in Computing
SPEAKER: Sarah Hug

ABSTRACT. This poster highlights a sociocultural analysis of a multifaceted K12 outreach program at New Mexico State University, a Hispanic Serving Institution that has had success recruiting local young women into the computer science department and beyond into the computing workforce. YWiC began in 2006 and has become a rich, extensive outreach program, reaching over 10,200 students across southern New Mexico. Over the years, YWiC has produced strong evaluation results related to computer science knowledge gains and computing interest (see Nesiba, et. Al 2015). The social scientists used Lave and Wenger’s (1991) community of practice concept to analyze program design and implementation. Findings show four ways in which the program promotes individual agency, belonging to the local and global computing communities, and “positioning” (Davies and Harre, 1990) of young women as competent computer scientists. Specifically, YWiC: a) makes multiple pathways into computing education and computer science careers via intentional role modeling, b) provides common base knowledge through initial experiences and deep support from multiple role models, c) gives opportunities for young women to identify, and be identified by others as, competent in computing, and d) promotes belonging to a group of like-minded girls with multiple interests.

Keith Jones (Texas Tech University, USA)
Akbar Siami-Namin (Texas Tech University, USA)
Miriam Armstrong (Texas Tech University, USA)
What Should Cybersecurity Students Learn in School? Results from Interviews with Cyber Professionals

ABSTRACT. Our cybersecurity needs surpass our ability to meet them. The workforce shortage in cyber fields could be mitigated by developing undergraduate curricula that prioritize the knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) most important to cybersecurity jobs. To determine which KSAs should be included in cybersecurity education and training, we administered survey-interviews to 44 cyber professionals at the hacking conferences Black Hat USA and DEF CON. Questions concerned 32 cybersecurity-relevant KSAs. Participants were asked how important each KSA was to their job and where they had learned that KSA. Fifteen KSAs were rated as being of higher-than-neutral importance. Most of these important KSAs concerned networks (how traffic flows across the network, network protocols, etc.) and threats/vulnerabilities (types of security threats and vulnerabilities, conducting vulnerability scans, etc.). Participants reported that they learned the most about 31 of the 32 KSAs while on the job. Overall, the data suggest that network and threat/vulnerability KSAs should be prioritized in course curricula and that historically threat/vulnerability KSAs have not been emphasized in school.

Sarah Judd (Girls Who Code, USA)
Megan Sullivan (Girls Who Code, USA)
Jeff Stern (Girls Who Code, USA)
Agile development in project-based curriculum at scale for middle and high school girls.
SPEAKER: Sarah Judd

ABSTRACT. Agile software development practices, which focus on iteration and adaptability, are commonly used in software engineering companies. Girls Who Code designed an after-school Clubs curriculum for middle and high school students that gives girls first-hand exposure to these practices. We use agile processes for two reasons. The first is practical: Over the course of a year-long Club, all participants collaboratively create a large project. Agile practices organize this effort. The second is mission-driven: We believe using real-world techniques and terminology will build girls’ identities as computer scientists.

Girls Who Code recognizes that when teaching 40,000 girls at scale, not every Clubs Facilitator will have had first-hand experience with agile development practices. We have created a curriculum to empower volunteers from any background to teach in an agile manner. Facilitators are given Session Outlines for each Club session that provide activities to structure the Club experience, as well as additional facilitator tips on topics such as finding an audience, researching pre-existing solutions, and developing solutions.

Throughout this year, the Girls Who Code Education team will observe Clubs to evaluate this pedagogical approach. We will follow 10 Clubs closely throughout the year, and visit approximately 40 more. During that time, we will interview facilitators about their experiences teaching our curriculum.

We will share our findings from these field observations and recommendations for integrating agile development practices into curricula. We hope to engage the computer science education community in a conversation about the strengths and challenges of this approach.

Clifton Kussmaul (Muhlenberg College, USA)
CS1: Computation & Cognition – An evidence-based course to broaden participation

ABSTRACT. This poster describes a new CS1 course on Computation & Cognition (C&C), targeted at students in psychology, neuroscience, and biology. In C&C, students learn to create and use software to imitate, model, or study processes in the brain. Topics include software development, control structures, data types, and testing, as well as key ideas in experimental design, stimulus presentation, searching, natural language processing, genetic algorithms, and neural networks. Thus, C&C enriches student understanding of content in their majors, and develops programming and computational skills in a relevant context, which should enhance subsequent research projects and career outcomes. C&C was developed with support from a 2015 Google CS Engagement grant, and incorporates research-based practices that improve student learning and help broaden participation in computing. In particular, C&C uses Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning (POGIL) (, in which student teams work on classroom activities that are specifically designed to guide them to construct their own understanding of key concepts, and to develop process skills such as communication, critical thinking, problem solving, and teamwork. C&C also uses PsychoPy (, a FOSS tool to run psychology experiments with two interfaces – the Builder GUI to design experiments, and the Coder IDE to write Python code. The first offering of C&C was small (3 female, 3 male) with strong ratings for the course overall, and for increasing student interest in the subject matter. In the future, we hope to add experimental paradigms and techniques, and engage more students from diverse backgrounds.

Louise Ann Lyon (ETR, USA)
Quinn Burke (College of Charleston, USA)
Jill Denner (ETR, USA)
James Bowring (College of Charleston, USA)
Should your college computer science program partner with a coding boot camp?

ABSTRACT. The rise of so-called “coding boot camps” as an alternative training ground for software development is prominent in the popular press, and these camps have caught the attention of colleges and universities. Administrators and faculty considering whether and how to partner with coding boot camps may want to consider what skills and knowledge boot camps are providing to students as well as successful college/boot camp partnerships. This poster reports on data from a collaborative NSF EHR grant (#1561705/ #1561717) funding a qualitative study of how coding boot camps and university CS programs prepare students for careers as software developers. As part of early data collection for this study, we have learned not only details of boot camp student preparation for the workforce, but also ways that universities are currently partnering with boot camps. This poster will report on data gathered in focus groups and interviews with curriculum developers from both coding boot camps and university CS programs categorized into the themes of: classifications of boot camps, screening/admission criteria, student profiles, training (both independently and in partnership with colleges/universities), and job placement. We draw suggestions from this initial data as to where boot camps may be able to enhance traditional CS degrees for students and what CS educators may want to consider when evaluating the boot camp experience.

Travis Mandel (University of Washington, USA)
Jens Mache (Lewis & Clark College, USA)
Examining PhD Student Interest in Teaching: An Analysis of 19 Years of Historical Data
SPEAKER: Travis Mandel

ABSTRACT. Undergraduate interest in computer science has grown massively over the years, creating a commensurate rise in demand for skilled, passionate, and well-qualified computer science instructors. High-quality computer science instructors at the college level typically earn their PhDs at reputable research universities. In this poster, we seek to understand whether these institutions are meeting the growing need for passionate and highly-trained computer science educators. To do so, we analyze 19 years of historical data gathered from the University of Washington Computer Science & Engineering department, which publicly posts PhD student preferences as they prepare for graduation. Our analysis of 309 graduating students reveals that the number of graduating students interested in teaching is alarmingly small, and has not grown over time to meet the increased need for quality educators. Our more detailed analysis suggests several potential reasons for this phenomenon. We hope that this poster opens dialogue surrounding possible interventions that might alleviate this issue.

Susan Miller (University of Colorado, USA)
Using Professional Development to move toward a Guided Discovery approach in the classroom
SPEAKER: Susan Miller

ABSTRACT. In this research, we studied two enactments of a professional development course designed to help teachers learn how to program games and teach programming to middle school students using a guided discovery approach. In the first PD course, a wholly teacher-directed approach was used. In the other PD course, a guided discovery approach was employed. We found three major differences between the groups. First, the descriptions of the games varied significantly based on the type of instruction, leading us to believe that teachers were taking more ownership of their creations. Second, the teachers who were taught with a guided discovery approach were able to work at a quicker pace, with less assistance, and ultimately were able to more quickly apply those skills to more complex games and simulations within the course of the professional development. Third, it also appears that this guided discovery teaching methodology is similarly impacting changes in pedagogy when these newly trained teachers use Scalable Game Design in the classroom. Students in classrooms where teachers were taught using guided discovery methods were more likely to go beyond the curricular materials when building their own games. This appears to indicate that these approaches to training will translate to changes in classroom practice, enabling teachers to more readily employ a guided discovery approach in their own teaching efforts.

Max Paulk (Kennesaw State University, USA)
Amber Wagner (Kennesaw State University, USA)
CodeBox64: A Tactile Input Modality for Block Programming
SPEAKER: Amber Wagner

ABSTRACT. Many K-12 and university classrooms are now using block programming languages (e.g., Scratch, App Inventor, to help students learn how to program. These block programming languages are popular because of their simplicity and “tinkerability” allowing novice users to create a project within minutes of first being exposed to the language. Unfortunately, these languages are highly dependent on the mouse and keyboard making them nearly inaccessible for those users with visual or motor impairments. This poster presents CodeBox64, a simplified input modality that is able to program block programming languages in a more tactile approach; it is a Tactile Input Modality (TIM). Because of the simplicity of CodeBox64, it allows visually impaired students to navigate the buttons and knobs with ease. CodeBox64 consists of four navigational buttons (i.e., up, down, left, right), a back button, and an enter button. It also contains an RFID sensor board that allows the user to use physical Lego blocks to execute commands of a block language. While CodeBox64 was originally developed to work with a custom, Blockly language, JamBlocks, it has the potential to work with other block languages. CodeBox64 demonstrates one possible methodology for enabling block languages to be accessible to those users with visual impairments.

Clare Rumsey (College of Charleston, USA)
Quinn Burke (College of Charleston, USA)
Christopher Thurman (Charleston, SC School District, USA)
Cracking the Code: Bringing Introductory Computer Science to a Charleston Middle School
SPEAKER: Clare Rumsey

ABSTRACT. In an effort to lay a foundational framework for a computer science (CS) middle school curriculum, this research examines youth’s use and perception of the introductory programming language Scratch through both the lens of storytelling and game making. Over the course of an academic semester (5 months), two classes of 6th grade students (52 students total) progressed from creating digital stories in Scratch to creating interactive games as teams, enhancing critical thinking skills, beliefs about ability, and overall literacy skills. This poster reports on students’ perception of coding both in terms of storytelling as well as in terms of gaming, and how each learning “product” (e.g., stories versus games) affected students’ overall perception of coding as as a practice, as well as their own interest in and persistence with such practice. Results are based on pre-and post course student and teacher surveys and interviews, weekly field note observations, and artifact analysis of particular coding scripts. Discussion section points to the wider implications for the growing number of middle school CS in-school and afterschool programs nationwide, and the role of stories and games as an effective “hook” to introduce children to CS.

Jennifer Sabourin (SAS Institute, USA)
Lucy Kosturko (SAS Institute, USA)
Scott Mcquiggan (SAS Institute, USA)
Coding for All: Computer Science Outreach for All Ages and Budgets

ABSTRACT. Many feel K-12 computer science requires a large tech budget, a classroom full of laptops, tablets or robots, and an experienced tech teacher. This belief is not unfounded as the majority of online computer science teaching materials require modern technology and Internet connectivity, making these tools inaccessible to the low-tech classroom. As a solution, we developed SAS® CodeSnaps, a free tool that provides an engaging coding experience with minimal technology. One iPad and one robot ( are all that is needed for every student in a classroom to code. With CodeSnaps, students program together using printable coding blocks. When their program is ready, they “snap” a picture using the CodeSnaps app which digitizes their code and executes it on a robot, allowing students to see their program execute in the real world. In this poster we present lesson plans for both a single engagement with students as well as week-long introduction to CS fundamentals centered around the CodeSnaps app. We also discuss results from two pilot studies designed to measure student engagement during these lessons.

Nicole Simon (City University of NY - John Jay College of Criminal Justice, USA)
Megan Banford (City University of NY - John Jay College of Criminal Justice, USA)
Cyber Crime Investigators: Pathways from High School to Cybersecurity Careers for First Generation College-Bound Students
SPEAKER: Nicole Simon

ABSTRACT. During summer 2016, John Jay College of Criminal Justice piloted Cyber Crime Investigators – a 4-week pre-college program that aimed to expand the pipeline of NYC public high school students who enter college ready to pursue a path toward a profession in cybersecurity. The program was designed by a team of educators with expertise in academic skill preparation, college access, career guidance, student learning, and computer science. Using IDEO's Design Thinking for Educators as a learning framework, 42 rising high school seniors engaged in a six-stage process to understand and create solutions for complex problems in cybersecurity. To understand the many real-world applications of cybersecurity, students worked in teams as consultants for Floor Plan, a fictitious non-profit organization (modeled after Housing Works) that provides housing and healthcare services to homeless LGBTQIA teenagers. They employed Design Thinking protocols to develop a cybersecurity plan for the organization, guided by the NSA’s First Principles of Cybersecurity. They worked on the challenge daily in “Lab.” During this time, they learned technical skills, such as operating a command line and principles of networking, and they practiced other academic skills, such as writing, project planning, and public speaking – all part of a foundational skill set for college success. They conducted interview and observation research during field trips and speaker visits and presented their final plans at a public competition judged by industry professionals during the program’s last week.

Peter Tucker (Whitworth University, USA)
Robert Bryant (Gonzaga University, USA)
Motivating K-12 Students Toward Computer Science, and Computer Science Students Toward Teaching
SPEAKER: Peter Tucker

ABSTRACT. The national push to increase computer science education in K-12 is exciting, but the demand for K-12 teachers to lead these classes exceeds the number of teachers qualified to teach the subject. Since many current CS teachers have backgrounds in non-STEM disciplines such as business, they often learn computer science material just ahead of students.

Our work addresses the need to increase expertise and enthusiasm for CS in junior high and high school classrooms. It also addresses the need to increase interest in university students to teach CS. For the past two years, we have been placing university students majoring in computer science into local classrooms for at least one hour each week. Those students range from teaching assistants to classroom lecturers, even as far as developing classroom presentations. In general, university students report a higher interest in teaching when they've completed their work, and a great deal of satisfaction in working with students. The junior high and high school teachers report that students show more enthusiasm and increased interest in computer science.

Xiaohong Yuan (North Carolina A & T State University, USA)
Li Yang (The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, USA)
Wu He (Old Dominion University, USA)
Jennifer Ellis (The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, USA)
Jinsheng Xu (North Carolina A & T State University, USA)
Cynthia Waters (North Carolina A & T State University, USA)
Enhancing Cybersecurity Education Using POGIL

ABSTRACT. This poster presents our NSF collaborative project “Enhancing Cybersecurity Education Using POGIL”. Although the POGIL (Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning) instructional approach has been used and evaluated in science and engineering disciplines, the use of POGIL in cybersecurity education is not in place due to the lack of POGIL materials in cybersecurity. To deliver key learning outcomes as well as “soft skills” in cybersecurity students, we are developing POGIL materials for teaching cybersecurity, implementing the POGIL teaching pedagogy in cybersecurity courses, and evaluating the teaching and learning effectiveness of the developed POGIL materials and teaching method. We are developing POGIL materials for fifteen topics in six areas: cryptography, access control, network security, risk management, web security, and secure coding. These POGIL materials will be implemented and evaluated in eight different courses at three universities. Through assessing the developed POGIL materials and teaching method, we seek to answer the following research question: Is using the POGIL method more effective than the traditional/lecture-based teaching method in terms of learning outcomes, learning experience, attitudes and motivation? The developed POGIL materials will contribute to the effective resources for cybersecurity education, and enhance cybersecurity education by developing student key skills as well as improving student attitudes, motivation and enjoyment in learning.

10:00-11:30 Session 19C: NSF Showcase #3
Mark Sherriff (University of Virginia, USA)
Location: 4A
10:45-12:00 Session 20A: K-8

K-12 / Novice Learners

Paul Tymann (RIT, USA)
Location: 611
Kathryn Rich (UChicago STEM Education, USA)
Carla Strickland (UChicago STEM Education, USA)
Diana Franklin (UChicago STEM Education, USA)
A Literature Review through the Lens of Computer Science Learning Goals Theorized and Explored in Research
SPEAKER: Kathryn Rich

ABSTRACT. Research on appropriate topics and goals for computer science (CS) education in elementary and middle school has been ongoing for decades, but the recent movement toward CS for all requires the research community to gain a better understanding of what is most important to teach, to whom, and in what order. We conducted a literature review with specific attention to cataloging computer science learning goals that experts theorize are important to teach as well as learning goals that have been explored and researched with students in K-8. By mapping the former onto the latter, we discovered six categories of goals that are theorized as important but, according to our review, are yet to be researched with K-8 students. We discuss the potential implications of these gaps for future research.

Christina Gardner-Mccune (University of Florida, USA)
David Touretzky (Carnegie Mellon University, USA)
Evaluating the Effect of Using Physical Manipulatives to Foster Computational Thinking in Elementary School

ABSTRACT. Researchers and educators have designed curricula and resources for introductory programming environments such as Scratch, App Inventor, and Kodu to foster computational thinking in K-12. This paper is an empirical study of the effectiveness and usefulness of tiles and flashcards developed for Microsoft Kodu Game Lab to support students in learning how to program and develop games. In particular, we investigated the impact of physical manipulatives on 3rd – 5th grade students’ ability to understand, recognize, construct, and use game programming design patterns. We found that the students who used physical manipulatives performed well in rule construction, whereas the students who engaged more with the rule editor of the programming environment had better mental simulation of the rules and understanding of the concepts.

Anita Dewitt (Grinnell College, USA)
Julia Fay (Grinnell College, USA)
Madeleine Goldman (Grinnell College, USA)
Eleanor Nicolson (Grinnell College, USA)
Linda Oyolu (Grinnell College, USA)
Lukas Resch (Grinnell College, USA)
Jovan Saldaña (Grinnell College, USA)
Soulideth Sounalath (Grinnell College, USA)
Tyler Williams (Grinnell College, USA)
Kathryn Yetter (Grinnell College, USA)
Elizabeth Zak (Grinnell College, USA)
Narren Brown (Grinnell College, USA)
Samuel Rebelsky (Grinnell College, USA)
Arts Coding for Social Good: A Pilot Project for Middle-School Outreach

ABSTRACT. Computer science, particularly in the United States, continues to suffer from underrepresentation by women and stu- dents of color. Increasingly, evidence suggests that we need to approach student perceptions of computer science and self perceptions of “who does computer science” before college, at ages in which students have not yet formed difficult-to-change viewpoints.

In an effort to address underrepresented groups in com- puting, as well as to change common, stereotypical percep- tions of what a computer scientist is, we ran a pilot summer camp that sourced students from our local community and sought to increase their self-efficacy and change the way they conceptualized Computer Science. We drew on approaches that have shown success at the college level — in particular, Computing for Social Good [5] and Media Computation [7] — to introduce students to important concepts. The camp was structured as a week-long, full-day camp in one of the typical Computer Science classrooms, We taught programming in Processing to 28 rising 5th–9th grade students, focusing on artistic aspects and real-world inspiration.

In this paper, we report on the project (both successes and failures) and the effects the project had on students’ self-efficacy and attitudes towards computer science.

10:45-12:00 Session 20B: Novice Programmers


Christine Alvarado (UC San Diego, USA)
Location: 612
Ellie Lovellette (Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, USA)
John Matta (Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, USA)
Dennis Bouvier (Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, USA)
Roger Frye (Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, USA)
Just the Numbers: An Investigation of Contextualization of Problems for Novice Programmers

ABSTRACT. Contextualization of problems is widely studied in mathematics education. In computer science it is taken for granted that authentic, contextualized programming assignments will increase student interest and therefore enhance performance in programming assignments. This paper examines whether contextualization is, in fact, beneficial for students. We present a study that compares novice programmers' ability to code a solution given two versions of a problem. One version is contextualized, the other is non-contextualized, using "just the numbers." The results presented indicate that there is no difference in success rates for the two types of programming assignments.

Basma Alqadi (Kent State University, USA)
Jonathan Maletic (Kent State University, USA)
An Empirical Study of Debugging Patterns Among Novices Programmers
SPEAKER: Basma Alqadi

ABSTRACT. Students taking introductory computer science courses often have difficulty with the debugging process. This work investigates a number of different logical errors that novice programmers encounter and the associated debugging behaviors. Data is collected and analyzed data in two different experiments from 142 subjects. The results show some errors are much more difficult than others. Different types of bugs and novices’ debugging behaviors are identified. Years of experience showed a significant role in the process of debugging in terms of correctness level and time required for debugging.

Thomas Price (North Carolina State University, USA)
Yihuan Dong (North Carolina State University, USA)
Dragan Lipovac (North Carolina State University, USA)
Exemplary Paper: iSnap: Towards Intelligent Tutoring in Novice Programming Environments
SPEAKER: Thomas Price

ABSTRACT. Programming environments intentionally designed to support novices have become increasingly popular, and growing research supports their efficacy. While these environments offer features to engage students and reduce the burden of syntax errors, they currently offer little support to students who get stuck and need expert assistance. Intelligent Tutoring Systems (ITSs) are computer systems designed to play this role, helping and guiding students to achieve better learning outcomes. We present iSnap, an extension to the Snap programming environment which adds some key features of ITSs, including detailed logging and automatically generated hints. We share results from a pilot study of iSnap, indicating that students are generally willing to use hints and that hints can create positive outcomes. We also highlight some key challenges encountered in the pilot study and discuss their implications for future work.

10:45-12:00 Session 20C: Collaborative Learning


Henry Walker (Grinnell College, USA)
Location: 613-614
Tammy Vandegrift (University of Portland, USA)
POGIL Activities in Data Structures: What do Students Value?

ABSTRACT. This paper describes the creation, use, and evaluation of POGIL (Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning) activities in a Data Structures course. POGIL draws upon constructivist and collaborative learning theories in which students work in teams through guided sets of questions. The purpose of this study was to see how students valued POGIL activities in terms of their learning. Survey responses were used to assess how students valued POGIL. Over 90% of students stated that POGIL helped them learn the material. Not only did it help them learn data structures, they reported value in working through problems with others, seeing how others think, being accountable for their own learning, and using the activities to review the material. Overall, POGIL was valued by students and this teaching method could be of value to other computing courses.

Michael Kirkpatrick (James Madison University, USA)
Exemplary Paper: Student Perspectives of Team-Based Learning in a CS Course: Summary of Qualitative Findings

ABSTRACT. Team-Based Learning (TBL) is an active learning pedagogy that involves a substantial amount of preparation work by students. While previous work shows that objective measures of student learning outcomes improved after TBL adoption in CS, little work has been done to evaluate the students’ perspectives rigorously. In this work, we present the qualitative findings from a larger mixed-methods study of student perspectives. These results suggest that most students find TBL rewarding, although there are some aspects of the pedagogy that can be frustrating and may require alteration for TBL adoption in CS.

Fernando J. Rodríguez (University of Florida, USA)
Kimberly Michelle Price (University of Florida, USA)
Kristy Elizabeth Boyer (University of Florida, USA)
Exemplary Paper: Exploring the Pair Programming Process: Characteristics of Effective Collaboration

ABSTRACT. Pair programming is a collaboration paradigm that has been increasingly adopted in computer science education. Research has established that pair programming can hold benefits for students’ learning and attitudes, but comparatively little is known about the ways in which the collaborative process benefits students’ CS learning. This paper examines the collaboration process, comparing important outcomes with how students’ dialogue and problem-solving approaches unfolded. The results show that the collaboration is more effective when both partners make substantive dialogue contributions, express uncertainty, and resolve it. In particular, driver dialogue expressivity is associated with improved outcomes. The findings provide insight into the ways in which pair programming dialogue benefits student learning during CS problem solving.

10:45-12:00 Session 20D: Software Engineering

Advanced Topics

Eric Aaron (Vassar College Dept. of Computer Science, USA)
Location: 608
Mike O'Leary (Towson University, USA)
Innovative Pedagogical Approaches to a Capstone Laboratory Course in Cyber Operations
SPEAKER: Mike O'Leary

ABSTRACT. This paper provides pedagogical lessons drawn from a capstone hands-on laboratory course in cyber operations. It is taught as a flipped class, where the center piece is a collection of exercises that require teams of students to set up, defend, and attack complex networks. Project designs are presented, including balancing offense and defense to improve course learning outcomes. Lessons on the recruiting and managing of an external ``red team'' are provided. Grading issues are addressed, as are techniques to manage students of different skills and motivations.

John Coffey (University of West Florida, USA)
A Study of the Use of a Reflective Activity to Improve Students' Software Design Capabilities
SPEAKER: John Coffey

ABSTRACT. This paper contains a description of a follow-on to a pilot study in which students performed reflective activities as part of the design process in an advanced programming course. Students produced an initial design for their programs that was due within a week after the program was assigned. Along with their projects, students submitted a document reflecting the final design and an analysis of the changes between them. Requirements for the analysis were made more explicit than in the pilot study. The format of the document was specified and the task was described to the students as a technical writing activity. Results of the work are reported and a comparison with prior work that did not have a specified structure for the student analysis are described.

Vaibhav Anu (North Dakota State University, USA)
Gursimran Walia (North Dakota State University, USA)
Gary Bradshaw (Mississippi State University, USA)
Exemplary Paper: Incorporating Human Error Education into Software Engineering Courses via Error-based Inspections
SPEAKER: Vaibhav Anu

ABSTRACT. In spite of the human-centric aspect of software engineering (SE) discipline, human error knowledge has been ignored by SE educators as it is often thought of as something that belongs in the realm of Psychology. SE curriculum is also severely devoid of educational content on human errors while other human-centric disciplines (aviation, medicine, process control) have developed human error training and other interventions. To evaluate the feasibility of using such interventions to teach students about human errors in SE, this paper describes an exploratory study to evaluate whether requirements inspections driven by human errors can be used to deliver both requirements validation knowledge (a key industry skill) and human error knowledge to students. The results suggest that human error based inspections can enhance the fault detection abilities of students, a primary learning outcome of inspection exercises conducted in software engineering courses. Additionally, results showed that students found human error information useful for understanding the underlying causes of requirement faults.

10:45-12:00 Session 20E: Mobile

Learning / Instructional Styles

Jaime Spacco (Knox College, USA)
Location: 609
Kameswari Chebrolu (IIT Bombay, India)
Bhaskaran Raman (IIT Bombay, India)
Vinay Chandra Dommeti (IIT Bombay, India)
Akshay Veer Boddu (IIT Bombay, India)
Kurien Zacharia (IIT Bombay, India)
Arun Babu (IIT Bombay, India)
Prateek Chandan (IIT Bombay, India)
SAFE: Smart Authenticated Fast Exams for Student Evaluation in Classrooms

ABSTRACT. Considerable experimentation is happening in today's classrooms to handle large classes. In this paper, we present SAFE (Smart Authenticated Fast Exams), a tool that enables continuous assessment in the form of regular/weekly quizzes in classes. SAFE is based on a BYOD (bring your own device) model that leverages student smartphones to conduct {\it auto-graded, cheating-free} exams in a {\it proctored} class room setting. SAFE has 3 components: a smartphone app, a web server and WiFi infrastructure to enable app-server communication. SAFE support a rich set of features to handle various types of question papers as well as instructor preferences.

In the design of SAFE, we set to achieve 4 goals: easy setup, cheating-free operation, robustness and scale. Easy setup is achieved predominantly due to the BYOD model and online mode of exams. Cheating is prevented via locking the app for the intended purpose along with reporting to the server any user attempts at cheating. Robustness is handled via periodic syncing of messages and careful consideration of corner cases. Scale is handled by carefully tuning the WiFi as well as via application level scheduling.

SAFE has been used so far to conduct 90+ in-class quizzes in 7 courses in the last 1 year. It was also used to conduct a high stake admission test for a Master's program in Computer Science. The feedback from end-users has been very positive and we continue to get new requests for trials in other courses. This paper presents the design of SAFE and evaluation based on our experience thus far.

Matthew Boutell (Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, USA)
Choosing face-to-face or video-based instruction in a mobile app development course

ABSTRACT. The face-to-face interaction in a traditional classroom on campus provides many benefits to students: the ability to ask questions and get immediate feedback, external motivation from the instructor and peers to succeed, the joy of interaction, and the ability to work face-to-face with classmates on projects. Meanwhile, video-based, online instruction offers several different benefits: convenience for students due to flexibility in time and place of learning, ease of reviewing materials for mastery, and the ability to work at one’s own pace. When given the choice between these two formats, which do students choose? Students enrolled in an upper-level mobile app development course could opt to attend class with face-to-face instruction, to watch videos of the instructor, or to switch between the two formats as they saw fit. Students were given pre- and post-surveys asking them which format they preferred and why. Results indicate that slightly more than half of the students chose the video-based option and that students chose as they did for expected reasons, such as wanting to ask questions in class or wanting the flexibility to watch and re-watch video on demand. More interestingly, results also indicated that students who chose video did not suffer from the dropout and failure rates so commonly reported in the literature, that learning was equally effective using both formats, and that students’ expectations of which format they would use were quite different from what they ended up using. However, with a small sample size at one institution, local factors, like scheduling the course during lunchtime, also played a role in students’ choices.

Debzani Deb (Winston-salem state university, USA)
Mohammad Fuad (Winston-Salem State University, USA)
Mallek Kanan (Winston-Salem State University, USA)
Creating Engaging Exercises with Mobile Response System (MRS)
SPEAKER: Debzani Deb

ABSTRACT. Computer Science instructors have been exploiting learning technology such as Algorithm Visualization (AV) for last few years to explain hard-to-understand algorithms to the learners through simulations and animations. In this work, we study an active and highly engaging approach, namely the construction of visualizations of the algorithms under study. Our approach is further augmented with automated assessment of students’ in-class construction activities which they execute as apps in their mobile devices. For illustration, we utilize case study, a step-by-step visualization of a construction exercise app, to explain how technology is leveraged to provide a richer way for learners to interact with a problem, and how instructor can acquire real-time evidence of student comprehension of covered lecture material. Our experimental evaluation confirms the educational benefits of the proposed approach in terms of enhanced student learning, reduced drop-out rate and increased student satisfaction.

10:45-12:00 Session 20F: Special Session: POGIL
Location: 6E
Helen H. Hu (Westminster College, USA)
Chris Mayfield (James Madison University, USA)
Janice L. Pearce (Berea College, USA)
Special Session: Converting Your Teaching (or Even Your Whole Department!) to Active Learning via POGIL
SPEAKER: Helen H. Hu

ABSTRACT. POGIL (Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning) is a form of active learning where students work collaboratively through activities designed to guide them to discover concepts on their own. POGIL is based on the principle that students will learn and retain more when they construct their own understanding of the computer science content. Working in groups of three to four, students develop process skills, such as problem solving, communication, and teamwork. This special session will first provide SIGCSE attendees the opportunity to experience a computer science POGIL activity for themselves. We will then discuss different ways that instructors might adopt POGIL for use in their classroom, and how the adoption of POGIL by multiple instructors in a department can change the culture of the department.

10:45-12:00 Session 20G: Panel: K-12 VOLUNTEERS
Location: 602-604
Leigh Ann Delyser (NYC Foundation for CS Education, USA)
Tom O'Connell (Code Interactive, USA)
Rebecca Novak (ScriptEd, USA)
Kevin Wang (TEALS/Microsoft Philanthropies, USA)
Diane Levitt (Cornell Tech, USA)
Panel: Volunteer Best Practices for K12 CS

ABSTRACT. Computer Science Education is rapidly expanding in the United States. As a part of this expansion, many programs are using university students and industry volunteers for a variety of purposes within schools. These volunteers can bring a wealth of content knowledge and professional experience in their interactions with students, and can be inspirational when talking about the problems they work on. Some programs even advocate for the use of professionals for instruction based upon their content knowledge. Although professionals often have a high level of content knowledge, they may lack the training or experience necessary to be effective in the classroomIn. This panel brings together 4 different organizations with experience working with content expert volunteers with widely disparate preparation in teaching.

In this panel we will share lessons learned by the organizations whose programs rely on volunteer instructors and mentors, that combined work with over 1,000 volunteers for multiple years. Topics discussed by the panel will include recruitment and selection of volunteers, volunteer training prior to entering the classroom, appropriate supports for volunteers throughout the experience, volunteer retention strategies, and preliminary efforts at evaluating the implementations. Panelists will also discuss volunteers for short-term engagements such as speaking opportunities and school-based hackathons.

10:45-12:00 Session 20H: Panel: SEMINAR COURSES
Location: 606
Valerie Barr (Union College, USA)
Bryan Catron (Furman University, USA)
Christopher Healy (Furman University, USA)
Kate Lockwood (St. Paul Academy, USA)
Anil Shende (Roanoke College, USA)
Andrea Tartaro (Furman University, USA)
Kevin Treu (Furman University, USA)
Computer Science Topics in First- and Second- Year Seminar Courses

ABSTRACT. Over 90% of accredited 4-year colleges and universities in the United States offer a first-year experience program such as first-year seminars or living-learning communities (where students are simultaneously enrolled in a common class and live in the same dorm) [1]. First-year programs aim to support the transition to college, improve academic performance throughout college, and increase student retention [1]. The pedagogical goals of first-year programs, including developing skills in academic writing, research, critical thinking, and discussion, lend themselves well to courses in the humanities, arts and social sciences and are overwhelmingly taught in these departments. However, computer science (CS) offers a wealth of compelling topics for engaging students in first-year seminars. This panel will present experiences teaching first- and second- year seminars from four different colleges and universities. We will discuss: (1) a variety of CS topics that we have found work well in seminars with students who have little-to-no CS experience; (2) the benefits of being involved in the program, such as recruiting new students into CS courses and the CS major; (3) strategies to address challenges such as faculty discomfort with teaching freshman writing; and (4) our motivation for sustaining CS faculty involvement in seminar programs despite the demand for faculty to support increasing student enrollment in traditional CS classes. We will leave ample time for discussion with attendees, including questions regarding the logistics of proposing, preparing and offering such seminar courses. We will also encourage attendees to describe their own experiences teaching seminars and will brainstorm ideas for potential new seminar topics.

10:45-12:00 Session 20I: Special Session: LIBERAL ARTS
Location: 607
Doug Baldwin (SUNY Geneseo, USA)
Grant Braught (Dickinson College, USA)
Amanda Holland-Minkley (Washington & Jefferson College, USA)
Computing Education in Liberal Arts Colleges: A Status Report of the SIGCSE Committee
SPEAKER: Doug Baldwin

ABSTRACT. The SIGCSE Committee on Computing Education in Liberal Arts Colleges was approved in late 2015 and began organizing itself at SIGCSE 2016. The Committee has made an initial survey of the liberal arts computer science landscape, and has identified some central issues for more detailed study. This session will present the Committee’s initial findings and future plans, and will solicit audience participation in refining the set of central issues and identifying possible resolutions to them.

10:45-12:00 Session 20J: Microsoft Supporter Session: Dos and Don’ts of Partnering Software Professionals and Computer Science Classrooms and Why It Matters To You

Brett Wortzman - Instruction and Training Manager, TEALS/Microsoft Philanthropies
Kasey Champion – Computer Science Curriculum Developer, Microsoft Learning

Come hear from professionals with experience in both engineering and education about how to create the most effective partnerships between industry and classrooms. Led by members of Microsoft Philanthropies' TEALS program ( and the Microsoft Learning group (, we'll discuss both general philosophies and specific practices that can help avoid common pitfalls when partnering engineers with schools, students, and teachers; and demonstrate how you can take what we've learned and apply it in at any level.

Since 2010, Microsoft Philanthropies' TEALS program ( has recruited, trained, and placed software professionals from over 200 companies in more than 300 high schools across the US.  Meanwhile, the Microsoft Learning group has deployed a wide range of computer science curriculum to thousands of students of diverse backgrounds all over the world.

Location: 616-617
10:45-12:00 Session 20K: Google Supporter Session: Curriculum and Interview Recommendations for Software Engineering Preparedness

Pierre St. Juste, Google

Join Google as we demystify the journey of a software engineer from their undergraduate studies to Google. Google Software engineer and former CS professor, Pierre St Juste, will host the discussion and review how faculty can better prepare students that would like to apply or gain entry into the CS field. During the session, we'll review best times to apply for internships, resume tips including a good example of a software engineering resume and how to prepare for a technical interview. We'll provide curriculum guidance for Freshman-Senior year that can best prepare students for internships and full time roles at companies like Google. Toward the end of the session, we'll open it up for Q&A and help answer your questions.

Location: 618-619
12:00-13:45 Session : International Lunch
Paul Denny (University of Auckland, New Zealand)
12:00-13:45 Session : CRA Teaching Track Faculty Lunch

Learn about planned CRA initiatives to support teaching faculty at research universities and contribute your input.

For additional information: contact Penny Rheingans (

To register for this event

Location: 6B
13:45-15:00 Session 21A: AP CSP

K-12 / Novice Learners

Tammy Vandegrift (University of Portland, USA)
Location: 611
Lori Pollock (University of Delaware, USA)
Chrystalla Mouza (University of Delaware, USA)
Amanda Czik (University of Delaware, USA)
Alexis Little (University of Delaware, USA)
Debra Coffey (University of Delaware, USA)
Joan Buttram (University of Delaware, USA)
From Professional Development to the Classroom: Findings from CS K-12 Teachers
SPEAKER: Lori Pollock

ABSTRACT. The CS for All initiative places increased emphasis on the need to prepare K-12 teachers of computer science (CS). Professional development (PD) programs continue to be an essential mechanism for preparing in-service teachers who have little formal background in CS content, skills, and teaching pedagogy. While increased investment by federal agencies and the industry has raised the number of CS PD opportunities for K-12 teachers, there has been limited study of how teachers apply what they learn back in their classroom. This paper describes an in-depth qualitative study through interviews of 28 elementary, middle and high school teachers who participated in summer PD in preparation of teaching a full CS course or integrate CS modules into existing courses (e.g., science, engineering, business, technology, etc). The interview protocol focused on educators’ involvement in the PD, specific skills and strategies they learned, whether and how they have been able to apply these new skills in the classroom, what facilitated or impeded this application, and how students have responded.

Anthony Papini (TEALS/Microsoft Philanthropies, USA)
Leigh Ann Delyser (NYC Foundation for CS Education, USA)
Nathaniel Granor (TEALS/Microsoft Philanthropies, USA)
Kevin Wang (TEALS/Microsoft Philanthropies, USA)
Exemplary Paper: Preparing and Supporting Industry Professionals as Volunteer Computer Science Co-Instructors for HS

ABSTRACT. The rapid expansion of Computer Science (CS) education across the United States has left schools struggling to find teachers for CS classrooms. One approach to supplementing school and teacher expertise is to use industry professionals as volunteers in the classroom. This paper outlines a model of recruiting, training, and supporting volunteers in CS classrooms in a national computer science education program that creates partnerships between industry experts and educators. This paper presents detailed information about the volunteers, the training the volunteers receive, as well as the impact and outcomes on the students and cooperating teachers. Results from teacher, student, and volunteer survey show satisfaction with the volunteers, as well as continued growth in perceived volunteer classroom performance over the year.

Jeff Gray (University of Alabama, USA)
Michele Roberts (IUPUI, USA)
Jonathan Corley (University of West Georgia, USA)
Getting Principled: Reflections on Teaching CS Principles at Two College Board University Pilots
SPEAKER: Jeff Gray

ABSTRACT. The College Board estimates that the new AP CS Principles (CSP) course will set a participation record for new course launches. With a large number of students across the USA enrolling in CSP at the high school level, CS departments at colleges and universities will need to begin considering their position for awarding AP credit. One possibility includes the introduction of a new college-focused CSP course for non-majors that can serve as a mapping for AP credit. This paper summarizes the experiences of two faculty at different universities who were official CSP College Board Pilots for several years. An overview of each university’s experience is provided in terms of course demographics, common evaluation measures, and individual course nuances, followed by a series of recommendations to faculty who are considering the creation of a CSP course within their department’s curriculum.

13:45-15:00 Session 21B: Computers and Music; Undergrad TAs


Ellen Walker (Hiram College, USA)
Location: 612
Paul Dickson (Ithaca College, USA)
Toby Dragon (Ithaca College, USA)
Adam Lee (Ithaca College, USA)
Using Undergraduate Teaching Assistants in Small Classes
SPEAKER: Paul Dickson

ABSTRACT. Undergraduate teaching assistants have been used in many classes, over many years, and at many institutions. The literature primarily focuses on the practice in a university environment with large classes. We focus instead on the use of undergraduate teaching assistants in the small college, small class environment. We have been employing students in this capacity for over 15 years and have gained some insight on how best to use these undergraduate teaching assistants in the small classroom setting. We believe these conclusions can inform the design of other undergraduate teaching assistant programs.

Shelly Engelman (The Findings Group, LLC, USA)
Brian Magerko (Georgia Institute of Technology, USA)
Tom McKlin (The Findings Group, LLC, USA)
Morgan Miller (The Findings Group, LLC, USA)
Doug Edwards (Georgia Institute of Technology, USA)
Jason Freeman (Georgia Institute of Technology, USA)
Creativity in Authentic STEAM Education with EarSketch
SPEAKER: Brian Magerko

ABSTRACT. STEAM education is a method for driving student engagement in STEM topics through personal expression, creativity and aesthetics. EarSketch, a collaborative and authentic learning tool which introduces students to programming through music remixing, has previously been shown to enhance student engagement and intent to persist in computing. The goal of EarSketch is to broaden participation in computing through a thickly authentic learning environment that has personal and real world relevance in both computational and music domains. This mixed methods study extends previous work by 1) using a newly- developed instrument to assess creativity and 2) testing a theory of change model that provides an explanatory framework for increasing student engagement in STEAM. The results suggest that students who used EarSketch express statistically significant gains in computing attitudes and creativity. Furthermore, a series of multiple regression analyses found that a creative learning environment, fueled by a meaningful and personally relevant EarSketch curriculum, drives improvements in students’ attitudes and intent to persist in computing. This work makes a significant contribution to computer science education by establishing the effectiveness of an authentic STEAM curriculum and advancing our knowledge of the underlying mechanisms driving students’ motivations to persist in STEM disciplines.

John Peterson (Western State Colorado University, USA)
Greg Haynes (Western State Colorado University, USA)
Erik Brunvard (University of Utah, USA)
Exemplary Paper: Integrating Computer Science into Music Education
SPEAKER: Erik Brunvard

ABSTRACT. We present our experience in using a Domain-Specific Language, Euterpea, in a general education music class. While the use of {\em computing} in music education is common, we demonstrate that {\em coding} allows students without a background in music or computing to explore topics in music form and theory.

Coding supports a new style of music education, one that is focused on composing music rather that performance or appreciation of existing music. We focus on styles of music that can be built algorithmically from a structural description. With such music the use of coding allows students to define and use patterns in a way that makes it possible for complex compositions to be specified in a simple manner. This approach works well in the context of general education: we have designed our curriculum around specific genres of music that are easily represented using simple domain-specific language rather than address all possible topics in music theory through a complex language.

Our experience suggests that a well-designed DSL for describing musical compositions provides a unique way to introduce students to core concepts in music in way that is engaging and pedagogically appropriate for learning about music theory and structure. Students are also exposed to important computing concepts such as language syntax, functions, abstractions, and types. We have also used this approach with pre-college students and believe that this style of music education can be adapted to a K12 environment.

13:45-15:00 Session 21C: CS1


Joel Adams (Calvin College, USA)
Location: 613-614
Ben Stephenson (University of Calgary, Canada)
Michelle Craig (University of Toronto, Canada)
Daniel Zingaro (University of Toronto Mississauga, Canada)
Diane Horton (University of Toronto, Canada)
Danny Heap (University of Toronto, Canada)
Elaine Huynh (University of Toronto, Canada)
Exemplary Paper: Exam Wrappers: Not a Silver Bullet

ABSTRACT. An exam wrapper is a structured activity that students engage in after their instructor has graded and returned an exam, and is designed to promote self-reflection and improve study practices. This paper describes two studies examining the efficacy and student perceptions of exam wrappers. The studies were conducted at two major Canadian universities, using complementary research designs. We report that neither study produced evidence that exam wrappers have a significant effect on final exam scores or on course drop rates. However, we also find that the use of wrappers was associated with improved rates of test pickup and increased scores on a course evaluation question regarding the fairness of evaluation methods. Given these results, we advise instructors who are considering the use of exam wrappers to review the evidence for other possible interventions that may more effectively serve the same goals.

Nick Cheng (University of Toronto Scarborough, Canada)
Brian Harrington (University of Toronto Scarborough, Canada)
Exemplary Paper: The Code Mangler: Evaluating Coding Ability Without Writing any Code

ABSTRACT. Marking coding exam questions for introductory computer science courses is notoriously resource intensive and difficult to perform consistently. Students can be easily led astray by minor misunderstandings in the wording of questions, and graders often find it difficult to decide whether mistakes are attributable to simple misinterpretations, minor memory errors, or major lack of ability/understanding of the core concepts being evaluated.

In this paper we detail and evaluate "Code Mangler'' questions. The "Code Mangler" is a fictitious character who manipulates code; removing commenting, changing the order of lines, adding bugs, and otherwise breaking perfectly good code. The role of the student on the exam is then to use the mangled results to reverse engineer the original code. We discuss the benefits of this style of question, and perform an evaluation on a large (475 student) CS1 course, demonstrating that these questions are less resource intensive to mark than traditional coding questions, improve the confidence of the graders, and correlate strongly with student ability as assessed in traditional question styles.

Bruce Maxwell (Colby College, USA)
Stephanie Taylor (Colby College, USA)
Comparing Outcomes Across Different Contexts in CS1
SPEAKER: Bruce Maxwell

ABSTRACT. Context-based CS1 courses focusing on Media Computation, Robotics, Games, or Art have been shown to improve outcomes such as retention and gender balance, both important factors in CS education. We have offered a Visual Media focused CS1 course since 2008, and in response to faculty and student feedback, we expanded our curriculum to include a second context-based CS1 course focused on Science applications. Our goal was to have completely different projects but teach the same fundamental concepts. In order to measure whether students in each version were learning the same concepts, and to reduce confounding factors, the same professors co-taught both versions of CS1 and students completed the same homework, quizzes, and final exam.

Our analysis of the quiz, final exam, and final overall performance showed no statistically significant difference by context or by gender. There was also no difference by context or gender in whether students took additional CS courses in the following two semesters. Furthermore, as a percentage of the students eligible to take the next offering of CS2, Data Structures and Algorithms, 48% of the students in these two offerings of CS1 registered for CS2, with no significant difference between contexts. Our conclusion is that we were successful in achieving similar outcomes, and the benefits of context-based CS1 courses, in both the Visual Media and Science versions of the course.

13:45-15:00 Session 21D: Algorithms

Advanced Topics

Mark Sherriff (University of Virginia, USA)
Location: 608
Mohammed F. Farghally (Virginia Tech, USA)
Kyu Han Koh (California State University Stanislaus, USA)
Hossameldin Shahin (Virginia Tech, USA)
Clifford A. Shaffer (Virginia Tech, USA)
Exemplary Paper: Evaluating the Effectiveness of Algorithm Analysis Visualizations

ABSTRACT. Algorithm Visualizations (AVs) have been used for years as an interactive method to convey data structures and algorithms concepts. However, AVs have traditionally focused on illustrating the mechanics of how an algorithm works. We have developed visualizations that we name Algorithm Analysis Visualizations (AAVs), that focus on conveying algorithm analysis concepts. We present our findings from an initial evaluation study of the effectiveness of AAVs when applied to a semester long Data Structures course. AAVs were evaluated in terms of student engagement, student satisfaction, and student performance. Results indicate that the intervention group students spent significantly more time with the AAVs than did the control group students who used primarily textual content. Students gave positive feedback regarding the usefulness of the AAVs in illustrating algorithm analysis concepts. Students from the intervention group had better performance on the final exam than did control group students.

Mohammed F. Farghally (Virginia Tech, USA)
Kyu Han Koh (California State University Stanislaus, USA)
Jeremy V. Ernst (Virginia Tech, USA)
Clifford A. Shaffer (Virginia Tech, USA)
Towards a Concept Inventory for Algorithm Analysis Topics

ABSTRACT. We present initial results from our work towards developing a concept inventory for algorithm analysis (AACI) at the post-CS2 level. We used a Delphi process to identify a list of algorithm analysis topics that were considered both important and hard by surveying a panel of experienced instructors. Through a similar survey process, we identified a list of student misconceptions related to the identified topics. Based on this, a set of pilot AACI items were developed. We validated the misconceptions list by analyzing student responses to four administrations of the pilot AACI in two different universities during Fall 2015 and Spring 2016. Results revealed that a sufficient number of students held most of the misconceptions identified in the list.

Ben Schreiber (Swarthmore College, USA)
John Dougherty (Haverford College, USA)
Assessment of Introducing Algorithms with Video Lectures and Pseudocode Rhymed to a Melody
SPEAKER: Ben Schreiber

ABSTRACT. We discuss two video series, one that serves as an introduction to Binary Search, and the other to Selection Sort.  Each narrated series begins with an overview of the algorithm with step-by-step simulations on an interactive blackboard. It proceeds to a video that illustrates how to perform a complexity analysis with guided examples, and then applies that process to the associated algorithm. The series concludes with a video showcasing a song with algorithm pseudocode as lyrics, which are utilized line by line to implement the algorithm in code. These video series were piloted among a set of introductory courses involving coding and algorithmic concepts at two colleges. We assess the effectiveness of each series in terms of conceptual understanding and changes in student attitudes.

13:45-15:00 Session 21E: Peers & Large Classes

Learning / Instructional Styles

Judy Sheard (Monash University, Australia)
Location: 609
Christine Alvarado (UC San Diego, USA)
Mia Minnes (UC San Diego, USA)
Leo Porter (UC San Diego, USA)
Micro-Classes: A Structure for Improving Student Experience in Large Classes

ABSTRACT. As class-sizes grow in computer science, the personal attention received by students tends to diminish. This work aims to replicate small-class community effects within a large class by creating ``micro-classes''---small groups within the large class. These micro-classes consist of 20--30 students led by graduate teaching assistants and undergraduate tutors who are specifically trained in small-classroom instructional techniques. This paper studies the outcomes of the micro-classes framework in an upper-division data structures course and compares them to outcomes from the same class taught in a large lecture, active-learning format. Students report increased satisfaction and a higher perception of community in the micro-classes section, though there was no discernible difference in student academic performance.

Soohyun Nam Liao (University of California at San Diego, USA)
William Griswold (UC San Diego, USA)
Leo Porter (UC San Diego, USA)
Impact of Class Size on Student Evaluations for Traditional and Peer Instruction Classrooms

ABSTRACT. As student enrollments in computer science increase, there is a growing need for pedagogies that scale. Recent evidence has shown Peer Instruction (PI) to be an effective in-class pedagogy that reports high student satisfaction even with large classes. Yet, the question of the scalability of traditional lecture versus PI is largely unexplored. To explore this question, this work examines publicly available student evaluations of computer science courses across a wide range of class sizes (50–374 students) over a four year period. It first compares evaluations regardless of size and confirms prior work that PI classes are better appreciated by students than traditional lecture. It then examines how course evaluations change with class size and provides evidence that PI achieves a smaller decline in evaluations as class size increases.

Aaron Smith (University of North Carolina, USA)
Kristy Elizabeth Boyer (University of Florida, USA)
Jeffrey Forbes (Duke University, USA)
Sarah Heckman (North Carolina State University, USA)
Ketan Mayer-Patel (Univeristy of North Carolina, USA)
My Digital Hand: A Tool for Scaling Up One-to-One Peer Teaching in Support of Computer Science Learning
SPEAKER: Aaron Smith

ABSTRACT. Over the past few years, enrollment in computer science programs has increased dramatically. This exciting development brings with it a new challenge of quickly accommodating larger enrollment in computer science introductory courses. One-on-one peer teaching is a highly promising approach for supporting computer science students, and it scales with enrollment size. However, pedagogical and logistical challenges can arise when implementing a large peer teaching program. To study these challenges, we developed a transparent online tool for tracking one-on-one peer teaching interactions. We deployed this tool across three universities in large introductory computer science courses. The data gathered confirm the pedagogical and logistical challenges that exist and gives insight into ways we might address them. Using this information, we developed the second iteration of our tool to better support one-on-one peer instruction. This paper presents the modified tool for use by the computer science education community.

13:45-15:00 Session 21F: Panel: TOOLS
Location: 606
John Denero (UC Berkeley, USA)
Sumukh Sridhara (UC Berkeley, USA)
Manuel Pérez-Quiñones (UNC Charlotte, USA)
Aatish Nayak (Carnegie Mellon University, USA)
Ben Leong (National University of Singapore, Singapore)
Beyond Autograding: Advances in Student Feedback Platforms
SPEAKER: John Denero

ABSTRACT. Automatic grading of programming assignments has been a feature of computer science courses for almost as long as there have been computer science courses. However, contemporary autograding systems in computer science courses have extended their scope far beyond performing automated assessment to include gamification, test coverage analysis, managing human-authored feedback, contest adjudication, secure remote code execution, and more. Many of these individual features have been described and evaluated in the computer science education literature, but little attention has been given to the practical benefits and challenges of using the systems that implement these features in computer science courses.

The goal of this panel is to answer common questions about how these extensions to autograding affect courses in practice. Should courses build their own submission and grading systems from scratch, or is there real benefit to using an existing platform? Are the platforms available today only applicable to specific courses? Are some features only appropriate in CS 0 and CS 1 courses? What aspects help most with scaling to large enrollments? What features are difficult to deploy or confusing to students? What are past mistakes from which the community can learn?

This panel brings together perspectives from the developers of feature-rich platforms used by multiple courses. The presentations will highlight recent research in extending autograder platforms to address related problems in CS pedagogy, as well as tips for choosing a platform and using it for the first time.

13:45-15:00 Session 21G: Panel: CS FOR ALL, K12 PD
Location: 6E
Tracy Camp (Colorado School of Mines, USA)
Emmanuel Schanzer (Bootstrap, USA)
Joanna Goode (University of Oregon, USA)
Owen Astrachan (Duke University, USA)
Ed Campos (Orosi High School, USA)
CSPdWeek: A Scalable Model for Preparing Teachers for CS for All
SPEAKER: Tracy Camp

ABSTRACT. Professional development (PD) has long been recognized as one of the key ingredients in CS Education, particularly when addressing the problem of underserved communities. Over the last decade, significant work has been done to create professional development and curricular offerings that are research based, with a proven track record. Bootstrap, Exploring Computer Science and AP CS Principles represent these types of programs. Each of these programs has developed high-quality PD for educators and have been recognized by the White House as exemplar courses. However, economies of scale make it difficult to expand to the vast number of small school districts around the country, including some of the most isolated and underserved areas such as rural communities and Native American reservations.

This panel will discuss an alternative model - “CSPdWeek” – a national event aimed at providing best-in-class PD to teachers across the country. The inaugural CSPdWeek took place in July, 2016 at Colorado School of Mines, and provided a week-long residential experience for teachers attending one of three teacher-focused professional development programs. Additionally, Counselors for Computing, an NCWIT program, provided a shorter 2-day experience to 20 school counselors. Over 240 classroom teachers attended CSPdWeek, making this professional development the single largest cross-curricular effort in preparing U.S. teachers to teach computing as part of the “CS for All” movement.

13:45-15:00 Session 21H: Special Session: ETHICS
Location: 602-604
Bo Brinkman (Miami University, USA)
Keith Miller (University of Missouri, St. Louis, USA)
The Code of Ethics Quiz Show
SPEAKER: Bo Brinkman

ABSTRACT. This session is intended as a fun and highly interactive way for college and high school teachers to increase their familiarity with the ACM Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct. Using a quiz show format, participants will be asked to provide solutions to knotty (and sometimes humorous) ethical challenges. This will be followed by think-pair-share (so that everyone gets involved), and then a presentation of the relevant sections of the ACM Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct. Members of the ACM’s Committee on Professional Ethics will be on hand to collect feedback and questions about the Code, for use by the Code 2018 task force, and for the “Ask an Ethicist” feature at

13:45-15:00 Session 21I: Panel: Teaching To Increase Diversity and Equity in STEM
Location: 607
Helen Hu (Westminster College, USA)
Douglas Blank (Bryn Mawr College, USA)
Albert Chan (Fayetteville State University, USA)
Travis Doom (Wright State University, USA)
Kathleen Timmerman (Wright State University, USA)
Panel: Teaching To Increase Diversity and Equity in STEM

ABSTRACT. TIDES (Teaching to Increase Diversity and Equity in STEM) is a three-year initiative to transform colleges and universities by changing what STEM faculty, especially CS instructors, are doing in the classroom to encourage the success of their students, particularly those that have been traditionally underrepresented in computer science. Each of the twenty projects selected proposed new interdisciplinary curricula and adopted culturally sensitive pedagogies, with an eye towards departmental and institutional change. The four panelists will each speak about their TIDES projects, which all involved educating faculty about cultural competency. Three of the panelists infused introductory CS courses with applications from other disciplines, while one of the projects taught computational skills in natural science courses.

13:45-15:00 Session 21J: IBM Supporter Session: Addressing the Cybersecurity Skills Gap

Heather (H.Y.) Ricciuto, IBM

With a projection of 1.5 million unfilled cybersecurity jobs expected by 2020 (Frost & Sullivan Report, 2015), the cybersecurity skills gap simply cannot be ignored.  IBM is taking action, and you can too.  Get inspired!  Learn about the steps that IBM is taking to address this gap, including partnering with academia and government, embracing the cognitive era with Watson for Cyber Security, opening a state-of-the-art Cyber Range in Cambridge, Massachusetts and addressing the gender gap through middle-school outreach programs.

Location: 616-617
13:45-15:00 Session 21K: Vocareum Supporter Session: The Next Frontier For Large Online Classes

Sanjay Srivastava, Vocareum
David Joyner, Georgia Tech

MOOCs are changing the landscape of education. While the first generation of classes significantly increased access to education from top institutions and teachers, the focus now needs to shift to improving engagement and learning outcomes. We will discuss how Vocareum is being deployed on an EdX MOOC platform to deliver CS education.

Location: 618-619
13:45-15:00 Session 21L: Intel Supporter Session: Artificial Intelligence on Intel Architecture

Nagib Hakim, Intel Corporation

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the next big revolution in computing, contributing to cutting-edge innovations such as precision medicine, injury prediction and autonomous cars. Intel is the partner for AI today and in the future, and is committed to driving this transformation by offering a complete portfolio to deliver end-to-end AI solutions. Intel is democratizing AI innovations by increasing the accessibility of data, tools, training, and intelligent machines, while collaborating with academia to foster the next generation of technology leaders. In this session, you will learn about Intel’s AI solutions and how computer science faculty and students are utilizing Intel’s AI portfolio for education and research. You will also explore Intel® Deep Learning SDK, a free set of tools to develop, train, and deploy deep learning solutions.

Location: 615
15:00-15:45 Session 22A: Break, Exhibits & Demos
Sarah Heckman (North Carolina State University, USA)
Location: 4A
Mohammad Fuad (Winston-Salem State University, USA)
Interactive Problem Solving Using Mobile Devices in the Classroom
SPEAKER: Mohammad Fuad

ABSTRACT. To improve student’s class experience, the use of mobile devices has been steadily increasing. However, such use of mobile learning environments in the class is mostly static in nature through content delivery or traditional quiz taking. In CS courses, we need learning environments where students can interact with the problem and faculty can assess their learning skills in real-time using problems with different degree of difficulty. To facilitate such interactive problem solving using mobile devices, a comprehensive backend system is necessary. However, such system is not available to CS instructors. To facilitate in-class interactive problem solving, a Mobile Response System (MRS) is developed, which is independent of any interactive problems or its domain. This demo session will present details of NSF funded MRS software, associated pedagogy, and how to use it in the class. MRS provides faculty with the opportunity of evidence-based teaching by allowing students with exercises with different learning outcomes and by getting an instant feedback on their performance and mental models. MRS is open sourced, extensible and can render interactive exercise developed by third party developer.

Andreas Stefik (University of Nevada, Las Vegas, USA)
Richard Ladner (University of Washington, USA)
The Quorum Programming Language

ABSTRACT. Quorum is a relatively new programming language that was originally designed for students with disabilities. In recent years, as its adoption has increased worldwide in K-12 (largely in middle/high school) and at universities, it has expanded to be a powerful, commercial-grade, programming language that includes support for 3D gaming, music, and other fun and creative activities. While new features are designed for all, they maintain compatibility for people with disabilities, including a novel way for individuals who are blind to create 3D games. Finally, Quorum is the first language to use human-factors evidence from both field data and randomized controlled trials in the lab. By design, this approach allows the broader research community an organized way to influence the design of the language over time according to evidence-based practices. We call this approach evidence-oriented programming.

15:00-17:00 Session 22B: Poster Session #2
J. Philip East (University of Northern Iowa, USA)
Location: 4A
Samantha Andow (Harvey Mudd College, USA)
Kaitlyn Eng (Harvey Mudd College, USA)
Julia McCarthy (Claremont McKenna College, USA)
Olivia Palenscar (Scripps College, USA)
Thomas Schneider (Harvey Mudd College, USA)
Adam Schulze (Harvey Mudd College, USA)
Bryan Twarek (San Francisco Unified School District, USA)
Zachary Dodds (Harvey Mudd College, USA)
Merging MyCS: Lessons from a District-wide Middle-school CS pilot

ABSTRACT. In 2015-16, San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) piloted MyCS, a Middle-years CS curriculum, in half of its middle schools. This unexpected launch led naturally to diverging curricular branches: one that evolved within the district, another used by schools with the program already in place. The summer after the pilot, SFUSD's and MyCS's stewards convened for a week of feedback, PD, and planning. This poster highlights the curricular refinements, preliminary assessment results, and institutional changes that came from this curricular divergence and subsequent reconciliation. The data analyzed include teacher- and district-feedback, along with an analysis of student responses from SF's pilot implementation. Though accidental, this experiment suggests that substantial benefit can come from independently co-evolving (branching) and then reconciling (merging) curricula. When merged, those otherwise independent branches create a community both stronger and more invested for all of its stakeholders.

Michael Ball (UC Berkeley, USA)
Implementing “In-Lab” Autograding for Snap!
SPEAKER: Michael Ball

ABSTRACT. While text based languages have been (relatively) straightforward to grade automatically, visual programming languages have been largely left out of the equation. However, as the demand for introductory CS courses has recently grown, so too has the interest in CS courses that use visual programming languages, and thus the need for a scalable solution to providing student feedback. In this poster we present a system design for an autograder for Snap!, a visual programming language inspired by Scratch. We demonstrate how we integrated our autograder into UC Berkeley’s CS10 and compare student success of autograded lab assessments to oral lab check offs. We demonstrate how we offered real-time feedback to a course of 300 students, and how we integrated our tools into an edX MOOC with 15,000 students. Our autograder is a hosted solution which would allow other courses to use our tools with little effort.

Marie Bienkowski (SRI International, USA)
Eric Snow (SRI International, USA)
Studying Implementation of Secondary Introductory Computer Science: Pilot Results

ABSTRACT. Education researchers have extensively studied how secondary teachers adopt and adapt new curriculum and new teaching practices, especially in science and mathematics. Their goals are often to learn ways to help teachers enact new pedagogical approaches, so the results inform teacher professional development, as well as building knowledge in the field. Changing teaching practice often involves changes across a number of fronts: for example, inquiry-based teaching of science involves skills in developing questions, supporting student whole-class discussion and sense-making, and allowing students time to investigate authentic problems.

Research is now underway to discover ways to similarly help teachers in K-12 computer science (CS). K-12 CS curricula have emphasized inquiry- and equity-focused teaching practices as ways to engage and include students while simultaneously deepening students’ understanding of CS concepts and practices. While researchers have focused on measuring student attitudes to discern engagement and feelings of inclusivity, less work has been done on how implementation affects student learning. To study this, CS education researchers need frameworks and instruments to measure implementation, attitudes, and learning. We are developing and validating instruments that support mixed-methods study of curriculum enactment and teaching quality, with a focus on inquiry, equity, and computational thinking practices. This poster will present preliminary results from a large-scale study of implementation in secondary CS classrooms to build a more systematic understanding of evolving practices in measuring curriculum enactment and teaching quality.

Sayamindu Dasgupta (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA)
Benjamin Mako Hill (University of Washington, USA)
Measuring Learning of Code Patterns in Informal Learning Environments

ABSTRACT. Due to the absence of traditional forms of assessment, quantitative studies of learning using block-based programming languages in informal environments have relied on identifying the presence or absence of individual visual blocks in learners’ projects. Many important programming concepts (e.g., initializing a variable) involve the combination of several blocks. In this poster, we present a technique that uses a statistical method from epidemiology called “survival analysis” to model the rate at which programmers begin to use new code patterns. By analyzing data drawn from the trajectories of over 90,000 users from the Scratch online community, we demonstrate the potential of our approach. In particular, we model when users are at higher and lower levels of “risk” of demonstrating two particular code patterns – variable initialization and counting collisions. In our proof-of-concept analysis, we show that learning of both patterns is associated with behaviors like viewing inside projects, remixing, and commenting. We explain how our method can be extended to help understand predictors of skill acquisition in informal environments and can inform the design of more effective learning support structures.

Debzani Deb (Winston-Salem State University, USA)
On the Integration of Big Data and Cloud Computing Topics.
SPEAKER: Debzani Deb

ABSTRACT. With the fast growth of big data and cloud computing paradigm, we argue that each and every CS and IT students should be equipped with foundation knowledge in this collective paradigm and should possess hand-on-experiences in managing big data applications in clouds to acquire skills that are necessary to meet current and future industry demands. This poster presents our research that proposes gradual and systematic integration of big data and cloud computing related topics into multiple core (required) courses of CS/IT curriculum. The NSF funded study will be useful for CS/IT students and their instructors as it will identify big data and cloud computing related topics that are important to cover, find a sequence of the prescribed topics that can be incorporated into existing core courses most effectively, and suggest specific core courses in which their coverage might find an appropriate context. The poster will further identify the major challenges this intervention may encounter and will provide a deeper analysis of them. Finally, the poster will describe our experience of implementing one such course with proposed interventions during Fall of 2016 semester. The pre- post- test results that measure student opinion and understanding about big data and cloud computing topics will be presented in the poster which demonstrates improved student interest and learning.

Anita Dewitt (Grinnell College, USA)
Julia Fay (Grinnell College, USA)
Madeleine Goldman (Grinnell College, USA)
Eleanor Nicolson (Grinnell College, USA)
Linda Oyolu (Grinnell College, USA)
Lukas Resch (Grinnell College, USA)
Jovan Saldaña (Grinnell College, USA)
Soulideth Sounalath (Grinnell College, USA)
Tyler Williams (Grinnell College, USA)
Kathryn Yetter (Grinnell College, USA)
Elizabeth Zak (Grinnell College, USA)
Narren Brown (Grinnell College, USA)
Samuel Rebelsky (Grinnell College, USA)
What We Say vs. What They Do: A Comparison of Middle-School Coding Camps in the CS Education Literature and Mainstream Coding Camps
SPEAKER: Julia Fay

ABSTRACT. In attempts to broaden participation in computing, the computer science education community has developed a wide variety of outreach activities to encourage students of different ages to learn computational thinking techniques and to develop an interest in computer science. But how do the ideas that our community promotes translate into practice? In this project, we compared data from 52 recent papers on middle school summer coding camps to 480 of the much larger variety of ``mainstream'' summer coding camps offered by both for-profit and non-profit organizations. We report on common approaches and themes that others may choose to adapt or adopt. We also explore significant differences between the research-centered camps and the mainstream camps in approach, language, and apparent outreach goals.

Jean French (Coastal Carolina University, USA)
Hailey Crouse (Coastal Carolina University, USA)
Early Intervention to Enhance Female Interest in Computing Sciences
SPEAKER: Jean French

ABSTRACT. It is well-known that females are underrepresented in STEM fields – especially in the computing sciences.  Bias, stereotypes, and negative experiences can be realized early in a girl’s life.  Research suggests that early intervention is necessary to encourage female participation in the computing sciences as a possible educational and career choice.  While there are many catalysts that attribute to low interest and participation of females in computing, this research addresses five known causes:  a lack of exposure to computing at a young age, a shortage of positive role models in the field, negative stereotypes, unappealing approaches to learning computing, and uncomfortable learning environments.  In this research, Pre-K girls, as early as four years of age, were introduced to eight computer-related games and activities.  The girls learned about algorithms, computer programming, circuits, and robots in a hands-on, exploratory environment.  Age-appropriate surveys were conducted to compare the girls’ affinity towards the computer-related activities before and after the study.  The results of the study are encouraging as the girls demonstrated increased positive attitudes towards computer-based activities after participating in the study.  In addition, the results of the study also demonstrated that the participating girls were able to successfully learn computing concepts at a young age.  The presentation of the study will be accompanied by a hand-out including descriptions of the activities and associated equipment for those who would like to explore the topics independently.  The presenters will also demonstrate a few of the more portable activities used in the study.

Aleata Hubbard (WestEd, USA)
Yvonne Kao (WestEd, USA)
Computer Science Teaching Knowledge: A Framework and Assessment
SPEAKER: Yvonne Kao

ABSTRACT. Educators, researchers, politicians, tech companies, and others continue to advocate for the importance of K-12 students learning computer science in our increasingly tech-driven society. One way school districts in the United States address this growing demand is by allowing teachers certified in other disciplines to lead computer science courses. Summer and weekend professional development opportunities support these educators in developing the expertise needed for effective computer science teaching, but a great portion of their learning to teach computer science will occur through on-the-job experiences. Our four-year NSF EHR grant explores how a job-embedded professional development program that pairs high school teachers with tech industry professionals supports educators in acquiring computer science teaching knowledge. The research presented in this poster focuses on the third year of the study and includes (a) a theoretical component focused on creating a framework to explain on-the-job computer science teaching knowledge development based on case studies with six teachers, and (b) an empirical component focused on the creation and administration of a computer science teaching knowledge assessment. By the time of the SIGCSE symposium, we expect to have pre-test results from the first administration of our teaching knowledge assessment, completed by both high school teachers and their collaborating tech industry professionals. This poster will present our theoretical framework, resultant teaching knowledge assessment with sample items, and analysis of participants’ assessment responses and their relationship to specific teaching experiences.

Keith Irwin (Winston-Salem State University, USA)
Darina Dicheva (Winston-Salem State University, USA)
Christo Dichev (Winston-Salem State University, USA)
Open Extensible System for Dynamic Problem Creation for Computer Science

ABSTRACT. There is good evidence that students learn better when given more opportunity to practice skills using related problems. However, this requires a sufficient supply of automatically graded problems to enable instant feedback. This can be achieved through automating the process of problem generation. While a few dynamic problem generation systems exist, they are either very specific to a single topic (such as tools for automatic generation of parameterized questions for Java or C programming) or they are intended for other disciplines and not easily adapted to the needs of Computer Science.

We have developed a prototype system for authoring, administering, and grading dynamic problems. This system is specifically designed for computer science. To this end, it supports complex logic, calling external programs such as compilers or databases, and the creation and manipulation of figures and diagrams. Problems and useful code libraries can be created and shared between instructors.

It is a web-based system where instructors can specify problems by combining static text or images with bits of Lua code which add dynamism. When students use the system, their answers will be graded automatically, and they will be able to see the results, thus giving them quicker feedback. This is an integrated portion of a larger gamified learning platform called OneUp which is under development and aims to combine hands-on practicing with additional game-like motivational mechanisms. The goal of both the larger platform and the dynamic problems in specific is to increase student engagement in the learning process.

Ryosuke Ishizue (Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Waseda University, Japan)
Kazunori Sakamoto (National Institute of Informatics, Japan)
Hironori Washizaki (Waseda University, Japan)
Yoshiaki Fukazawa (Waseda University, Japan)
An Interactive Web Application Visualizing Memory Space for Novice C Programmers

ABSTRACT. The concept of memory management in C programming language is particularly challenging for novice programmers. Consequently, many researchers have proposed program visualization tools to alleviate these difficulties: for example, SeeC is one of the state-of-the-art tools for visualizing the behavior and execution status of C programs. However, three problems (P1–3) remain in SeeC, as well as in other existing visualization tools. P1 (Usability): SeeC requires many steps to revisualize modified source code. P2 (Capability): SeeC does not fully support dynamic memory allocation. P3 (Installability): novice programmers often find installation of SeeC challenging due to its dependency on Clang. We propose a new visualization tool named PlayVisualizerC (PVC) for novice C programmers, which provides three solutions (S1–3) for P1–3. S1: PVC reduces the steps required for revisualization. S2: complete support for dynamic memory allocation. S3: designed to be installed in the user’s web browser. From a small-scale experiment and a questionnaire given to 20 students, we found that a set of four programming tasks were solved 1.8 times faster and 24% more correctly using PVC.

Maya Israel (University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, USA)
Todd Lash (University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, USA)
Emerging learning progressions in K-5 integrated mathematics and computer science lesson plans
SPEAKER: Todd Lash

ABSTRACT. There is growing momentum to integrate computer science (CS) education across K-12, but there is little information about how this integration should take place (Grover & Pea, 2013). This is especially true in the elementary grades, as fewer studies have examined computing at these grades. Through a National Science Foundation STEM+C project, we are developing and studying learning progressions for integrated CS and mathematics at the elementary level. Our research examines how teachers are introducing CS concepts within mathematic as well as what computational concepts and practices naturally can be taught within the context of elementary mathematics. We are also examining how these emerging progressions align with the K-12 CS Framework and the new standards from the Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA). Future aims are to develop a coherent set of learning progressions related to areas such as debugging, sequencing, looping, conditionals, and decomposition within mathematics topics such as geometry, fractions, and arithmetic number stories. Our research lays the groundwork for the development of learning trajectories that will guide curriculum developers and practitioners to understand how to teach students across grades K-5 computing within the context of their mathematics instruction.

Deja Jackson (Kennesaw State University, USA)
Cindi Simmons (Kennesaw State University, USA)
Kate Zelaya (Kennesaw State University, USA)
Erica Pantoja (Kennesaw State University, USA)
Amber Wagner (Kennesaw State University, USA)
Hopper’s Fables: A Mathematical Storytelling Adventure
SPEAKER: Deja Jackson

ABSTRACT. Block Programming languages (e.g., Scratch, Blockly) are widely used in teaching students within K-12 classrooms and in some universities with hopes of introducing programming concepts to beginner students. The use of block programming languages in classrooms is an effort in encouraging students’ interest in computer programming by utilizing Papert’s “low floor” and “high ceiling” metaphor. Existing block languages have a huge impact in education; however, there are not many languages offering an emphasis on advancing skills in mathematics or reading while focusing on the need of students with disabilities. This poster describes our creation of a block language using Blockly’s API, HTML, JavaScript, and CSS. Our block language, Hopper’s Fables, is named after Admiral Grace Hopper and is a storytelling language based on completing interactive mathematical problems in an effort to engage students while going through the story. Hopper’s Fables is intended in aiding elementary students with learning disabilities through enhancing their math and literacy skills, while simultaneously building the student's digital fluency and developing their computational thinking skills. Hopper’s Fables is based on research of related work, which allowed for the creation of an evaluation rubric. Analyzing the characteristics of existing languages allowed Hopper’s Fables to come to life. By combining Papert’s “low floor” and “high ceiling” philosophy with educational foundations, Hopper’s Fables will provide students with an appropriate and enchanting learning environment.

Yerika Jimenez (University of Florida, USA)
Theodore Hays (Clemson University, USA)
Christina Gardner-Mccune (University of Florida, USA)
Computational Thinking App Design Mat: Supporting the Development of Students’ Computational Thinking Skills

ABSTRACT. Tools like MIT App Inventor and Scratch are designed to help students develop programming and computational thinking skills by allowing them to use their interest and personal experiences to create meaningful artifacts. However, students often need additional help in translating their ideas into functional programs because they lack understanding of how to map the visual aspects of their projects to programming constructs and understanding of how to develop appropriate algorithms that bring their ideas to life. To address this issue, we created a Computational Thinking App Design Mat (CT App Design Mat) to scaffolds students’ CT skill development in the context of creating a mobile application with MIT APP Inventor 2. The CT App Design Mat fosters student engagement in computational thinking through four areas of the mat: Problem Decomposition, Pattern Abstraction, Pattern Recognition, and Algorithm Design. In this poster will describe the design and results from the use of the CT App Design Mat with 80 eighth grade students. Our results suggest that most students understood the purpose of using the Mat, used the MATs effectively, and used some aspects of the Mat in developing their final mobile app project.

Chris Mayfield (James Madison University, USA)
Implementing CS Principles as a Breadth-First Survey Course

ABSTRACT. With the recent launch of AP CS Principles in 2016--17, many efforts are currently underway to share curriculum resources and prepare new teachers. The community has primarily focused on high school implementations, which have different situational factors than university courses (e.g., amount of class time). In this poster, we present the design of a survey course that aligns with CS Principles and also continues the long tradition of breadth-first introductions to computer science at the college level. We describe the instructional strategies, assessments, and curriculum details, providing a model for how to modify existing CS0 courses. We also outline twelve lab activities that support the computational thinking practices and learning objectives of the AP curriculum framework. All instructional materials including activities, labs, performance tasks, and rubrics are freely available on the course website: Quizzes, solutions, and other materials are also available to instructors upon request. The course has run successfully for the past four years at two universities and three high schools via dual enrollment. Initial results suggest that the curriculum has a positive impact on student confidence levels and attitudes toward computer science.

Chelsea Patek (University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, USA)
Ankur Chattopadhyay (University of Wisconsin - Green Bay, USA)
Can Undergraduate CS Research Be Student-Driven? - An Experimental Case Study
SPEAKER: Chelsea Patek

ABSTRACT. This poster presents a potential way of promoting student driven undergrad research that may provide an alternate path or option to the traditional faculty-driven undergrad research. We propose a unique model of inter-class student collaboration that motivates creativity, expands the scope of collaborative research and enables handling of conceptual gaps through inter-class peer mentoring. The proposed model engages students from an upper level class with students of a lower level class so that they can connect with each other in a peer mentor-mentee relationship to overcome conceptual gaps in learning. It provides upper level students with an exclusive opportunity to reinforce their conceptual grasps and engage in research for addressing the problems faced by the lower level students. This proposed model of improvised peer collaboration promotes a new kind of service-oriented learning project in CS that inspires innovation and leads to research on finding ways to handle common conceptual limitations and help student retention by assisting lower level peer mentees. It also assists upper level peer mentors in self-driving towards research oriented thinking for inventing methods to solve real-life authentic problems. The proposed model has been currently implemented in the UWGB CS curriculum, where CS2 students have been collaborating with CS1 students and have been participating in undergrad research as part of the process. These ongoing research experiments are useful in analyzing the performance of the proposed model through data obtained by conducting student surveys. Survey data have been gathered as insightful evidence from preliminary evaluations of the proposed model.

Kai Qian (Kennesaw State University, USA)
Hossain Shahriar (Kennesaw State University, USA)
Fan Wu (Tuskegee University, USA)
Cassandra Thomas (Tuskegee University, USA)
Emmanuel Agu (Worcester Polytechnic Institute, USA)
Broadening Secure Mobile Software Development (SMSD) Through Curriculum

ABSTRACT. While the computing landscape is currently moving towards mobile computing, the security threats to mobile devices are also growing explosively. Most vulnerabilities should be addressed in the mobile software development phase. However, many software developer professionals lack awareness of the importance of security vulnerability and the necessary secure knowledge and skills at the development stage. The combination of the mobile devices' prevalence and mobile threats' rapid growth has resulted in a shortage of mobile security professionals. Education for secure mobile application development is in big demand in IT fields. However, secure mobile software development is a relatively weak area and is not well represented in most schools' computing curriculum. This poster addresses the needs and challenges of building capacity and the lack pedagogical materials and real world learning environment in secure mobile software development through effective, engaging, and investigative approaches. We enhance the SMSD education through a collection of eight transferrable learning modules with hands-on companion labs on mobile coding; The preliminary work has been done and preliminary feedback from students is very positive. Students have gained hands-on real world experiences on mobile software security with Android mobile devices, which also greatly promoted students’ self-efficacy and confidences in their mobile software security learning.

Christian Roberson (Florida Southern College, USA)
Applications of Specifications Grading in Computer Science Courses

ABSTRACT. Traditional, points-based grading poses several challenges to computer science educators. Students can lose focus on learning the material and instead focus on the game of trying to accumulate enough partial credit to get to the next grade tier. Faculty can waste large amounts of time obsessing over partial credit point assignment for a particular assignment. It can be difficult to use course grades to connect student performance with learning outcomes for the course and the program. This poster presents an overview of an alternative approach to traditional grading: specifications grading. Specifications grading is a points-free, mastery style of grading that replaces partial credit with quality feedback and revision opportunity. This model provides several advantages over the traditional grading approach. These advantages include better support for high academic standards and rigor, an increased focus for students on learning by removing the intrinsic motivation to earn points, and a stronger connection between student grade assessments and course learning outcomes. The poster will provide an overview of specifications grading and its benefits, along with details of implementation for an Android application development course and an introductory-level programming course. Additionally, the poster will include student evaluation data from previous offerings of the courses.

Allison Scott (Kapor Center for Social Impact, USA)
Alexis Martin (Level Playing Field Institute, USA)
Frieda McAlear (Level Playing Field Institute, USA)
Sonia Koshy (Kapor Center for Social Impact, USA)
Do computer science exposure activities and courses at the high school level influence the pursuit of computing majors in higher education among underrepresented high school students?

ABSTRACT. In response to the lack of diversity in computing fields and associated lack of access to computing courses, an NSF-funded computing intervention was developed and implemented within the SMASH Academy for underrepresented high school students. Previous research indicated short-term impact of the intervention on computing interest and knowledge. This pilot data explores the longitudinal impact of this intervention and whether it influences the pursuit of computing majors in college. Using data from students who participated in SMASH in high school and are currently pursuing computing majors in college, descriptive comparative data suggest there has been a longitudinal increase in pursuit of computing associated with the intervention. This poster will also provide qualitative data and narratives to further explore whether students attribute their choice of major to the intervention, and therefore, whether these increases can be attributed to the intervention. In addition, this poster will also contain open questions to engage and stimulate the audience in discussion about ideas for additional analyses or variables to explore to examine longitudinal impact.

Cara Tang (Portland Community College, USA)
Cindy Tucker (Bluegrass Community and Technical College, USA)
Elizabeth K. Hawthorne (Union County College, USA)
Christian Servin (El Paso Community College, USA)
Curricular Guidance for Associate-Degree Transfer Programs in Computer Science with Contemporary Cybersecurity Concepts
SPEAKER: Cara Tang

ABSTRACT. In 2015, under the auspices of the ACM Education Board the Committee for Computing Education in Community Colleges (CCECC) began an effort to update the ACM Computing Curricula 2009: Guidelines for Associate-Degree Transfer Curriculum in Computer Science with inclusion of contemporary cybersecurity concepts. To this end, the CCECC established a task force of community college educators to review the ACM/IEEE Computer Science Curricula 2013 (CS2013) and identify foundational material in CS2013 that is appropriate for the first two years of a computer science education. To further inform the guidance, the CCECC administered surveys to a global audience of computer science educators to solicit input related to CS2013 knowledge areas (KAs) and knowledge units (KUs) and on cybersecurity topics, which are appropriate for associate-degree computer science transfer programs. The guidance has been through two rounds of public review and comment. This poster will present the 2017 update to the 2009 associate-degree computer science guidance.

Juliet Tiffany-Morales (Google, USA)
Kathy Haynie (Haynie Research and Evaluation, USA)
Jason Ravitz (Google, USA)
Karen Peterson (National Girls Collaborative Project, USA)
CS OPEN: Building Evaluative Capacity for Out of School Organizations that Engage Girls in Computer Science

ABSTRACT. The importance of computer science educational opportunities for girls cannot be understated, and strong evaluative practices are a critical for ensuring that these opportunities are of high quality and meet girls’ needs. In this poster presentation, participants will learn how a nonprofit and a corporate partner designed a program to build the evaluative capacity of participating nonprofits—the CS OPEN initiative. Presenters will discuss the guiding principles that shaped this initiative and share the challenges to and successes of developing an evaluation capacity building network that supports a diverse set of 12 grantees. Session attendees will learn from the designers and evaluation experts within this network: 1) how this evaluation capacity building partnership was developed and grantees were selected, 2) grantees’ experiences and challenges in designing and implementing evaluations, 3) the resources and efforts the partners have used to develop grantees’ evaluative capacity and to build the network, and 4) the impacts of these efforts on grantees evaluative capacity. Resources utilized by the CS OPEN grantees will be displayed with ratings and highlights of their growth in evaluative capacity. The poster will highlight major successes and lessons learned for implementing an evaluative capacity building grant initiative.

Jeramey Tyler (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA)
Matthew Peveler (Rennselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA)
Barb Cutler (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA)
A Flexible Late Day Policy Reduces Stress and Improves Learning
SPEAKER: Jeramey Tyler

ABSTRACT. We present a non-grade-penalty late day policy used in many of the large lecture, required courses in our computer science department. We study the effectiveness of this late day policy in reducing student stress, distributing demand for teaching assistant resources in peak hours before the homework deadline, and in maintaining or improving student understanding and homework grades. A complex late day policy can be efficiently implemented and managed within our open-source homework submission system that utilizes automated testing and grading, allowing students to submit and resubmit homeworks as they make progress on the assignment.

Daniela Marghitu (Auburn University, USA)
Amber Wagner (Kennesaw State University, USA)
Building Bridges: How the Southeast is Increasing the Representation of Students with Disabilities in STEM
SPEAKER: Amber Wagner

ABSTRACT. As part of the new and bold NSF INCLUDES initiative, we introduce the SouthEast Alliance for Persons with Disabilities in STEM (SEAPD-STEM) whose goal is to increase the representation of students and faculty with disabilities in all STEM fields. The SEAPD-STEM is an alliance consisting of 22 higher ed institutions including community colleges, four-year institutions, and universities with graduate programs. The primary methodology utilized by the SEAPD-STEM is to build bridges of support and mentorship between various levels of academia: in undergraduate institutions, upperclassmen will support lowerclassmen; graduate students will support upperclassmen; junior faculty will mentor graduate students; and senior faculty will mentor junior faculty. Moreover, there will be bridges from undergraduate/graduate to the workplace aiming to assist persons with disabilities in acquiring a position working in a STEM field. This poster presents how the bridges are formed in addition to preliminary data based on the work completed by the time of the SIGCSE Symposium. It is the intention of the SEAPD-STEM to increase the alliance each year in order to reach as many students with disabilities as possible.

Jan Vykopal (Masaryk University, Czech Republic)
Jakub Čegan (Masaryk University, Czech Republic)
Finding Exercise Equilibrium: How to Support the Game Balance at the Very Beginning?
SPEAKER: Jan Vykopal

ABSTRACT. Cyber defence exercises (CDX) represent a popular form of hands-on security training. Learners are usually divided into several teams that have to defend or attack virtual IT infrastructure (red vs. blue teams). CDXs are prepared for learners whose level of skills, knowledge, and background may be unknown and very diverse. This is evident in the case of high-profile international CDXs with hundreds of participants coming from government agencies, military, academia, and the private sector. In this poster, we present techniques of distribution of learners to teams with respect to their level of proficiency and prerequisite skills required by the exercise. Our aim is to reach the balance between the proficiency and the exercise to make the exercise beneficial for the learners and effective investment for sponsors. The poster describes three methods and compares their advantages and disadvantages. First, we present self-assessment questionnaires that we already used in four runs of a national CDX for 80 participants in total. We outline our findings from analysis of self-assessment of learners before and after the exercise, and the score they reached during the exercise. Second, we introduce a promising method of testing prerequisites of the exercise. This is still a work in progress but we believe that this method enables better assessment of learners’ skills with respect to the exercise content, and supports better the game balance. Finally, we compare both methods to a naïve one that shuffles participants to the teams randomly.

Rebecca Zarch (SageFox Consulting Group, USA)
Alan Peterfreund (SageFox Consulting Group, USA)
Collecting participation data across CS10K-funded PD providers

ABSTRACT. Computer Science is a rapidly growing and evolving field, with many secondary teachers participating in professional development to offer CS courses in their schools as the entry point to a CS education pipeline. In 2014 the Evaluator Working Group (EWG) formed to address the issue of common data collection across NSF CS10K projects to try and capture the number of teachers being trained across CS10K projects and their locations. The EWG goals are twofold: First, the EWG is seeking to test the feasibility of a diverse group of projects collecting and reporting common data collection. The lessons learned through this effort will hopefully inform the CS education professional development community as the field matures and data collection is more broadly supported. Second, the EWG hopes to have an accurate count of the number of teachers trained through CS10K; some demographic and descriptive information about teachers; information about the students enrolled in teachers’ classes and; information about the schools in which the teachers are offering courses. To accomplish these goals the EWG has developed a common data collection tool and process for projects to report aggregate-level participation data. To date 100% of projects submitted at least partial data. The results show that 1,538 new teachers have participated in PL through these 29 CS10K programs; taught in at least 909 public and private schools in 43 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. This poster will provide a visual display of both the process of data collection and the results.

15:00-16:30 Session 22C: NSF Showcase #4
Mark Sherriff (University of Virginia, USA)
Location: 4A
15:45-17:00 Session 23A: K-12 Professional Development

K-12 / Novice Learners

Judith Gal-Ezer (The Open University of Israel, Israel)
Location: 611
Sue Sentance (King's College London, United Kingdom)
Andrew Csizmadia (Newman University, United Kingdom)
Professional Recognition Matters: Certification for In-Service Computer Science Teachers
SPEAKER: Sue Sentance

ABSTRACT. In the context of rapid curriculum change, teaching computer science in school requires new skills and knowledge that existing teachers may not have. As well as a programme of teacher professional development (TPD), certification can be used to provide recognition to in-service teachers who have made the transition to computer science. The BCS Certificate in Computer Science Teaching has been designed and developed to give teachers professional recognition of their competence in teaching the computer science elements of the Computing curriculum. In this paper we describe the innovative design of this national certification and our experience over the last two years of its implementation; we are not aware of any similar scheme to offer professional recognition to in-service K-12 computer science teachers.

Helen Hu (Westminster College, USA)
Cecily Heiner (Southern Utah University, USA)
Thomas Gagne (University of Puget Sound, USA)
Carl Lyman (Utah State Office of Education (retired), USA)
Exemplary Paper: Building a Statewide Computer Science Teacher Pipeline

ABSTRACT. From 2012 to 2015, the number of Utah secondary teachers teaching computer science courses grew from 38 to 164. This growth was made possible by introducing three new CS teacher endorsements which reduced the effort required for existing teachers to start teaching CS. Instead of committing to completing five college-level CS courses in two years, an existing but new-to-CS Utah teacher could complete an Exploring Computer Science (ECS) endorsement in half a year. Thanks to changes to high school graduation requirements, students were able to take a CS course without using an elective credit, boosting enrollment and broadening participation. Analysis of ECS teacher surveys and student surveys found surprisingly few differences between CS-experienced teachers and new-to-CS teachers in their ability to teach CS. By the end of the ECS course, even ECS students with low confidence in their own CS abilities believed that anyone could succeed in CS, regardless of their teacher's CS background. All students' interest in taking additional CS classes significantly increased after taking ECS, although CS-experienced teachers had a stronger impact on ECS students with low confidence than new-to-CS teachers.

Dan Leyzberg (Princeton University, USA)
Christopher Moretti (Princeton University, USA)
Teaching CS to CS Teachers: Addressing the Need for Advanced Content in K-12 Professional Development
SPEAKER: Dan Leyzberg

ABSTRACT. More than two thirds of U.S. high school computer science teachers do not have a college degree in computer science. As industry continues to lure computer science graduates away from careers in education, school districts are increasingly turning to in-service teachers from other disciplines to teach courses in computer science. In order to facilitate this transition, these teachers, many of whom majored in another subject in college, enroll in one of the many summer professional development (PD) programs aimed at training teachers to teach a first course in computer science. However, once these teachers become comfortable with the introductory course, there is little support available for them to gain a stronger background in CS to be able to support their more advanced students or design additional computer science courses. In this paper, we describe an approach to providing more advanced computer science content knowledge to computer science teachers in a week-long summer professional development program.

15:45-17:00 Session 23B: Diversity


Bo Brinkman (Miami University, USA)
Location: 612
Jennifer Wang (Google, USA)
Sepehr Hejazi Moghadam (Google, USA)
Diversity Barriers in K-12 Computer Science Education: Structural and Social
SPEAKER: Jennifer Wang

ABSTRACT. As computer science (CS) education expands at the K–12 level, we must be careful to ensure that CS neither exacerbates existing equity gaps in education nor hinders efforts to diversify the field of CS.  In this paper, we discuss structural and social barriers that influence Blacks, Hispanics, and girls, based on surveys of 1,672 students, 1,677 parents, 1,008 teachers, 9,805 principals, and 2,307 superintendents in the United States.  We find that despite higher interest in CS among Black and Hispanic students and parents, these students experience greater structural barriers in accessing computers and CS classes than White students.  And while girls have the same access as boys, social barriers exist with girls reporting lower awareness of CS opportunities outside of classes, less encouragement from teachers and parents, and less exposure to CS role models in the media.  It is critical for expanding CS opportunities to address the unique issues for each group.

Robert McCartney (University of Connecticut, USA)
Jonas Boustedt (Hogskolan i Gavle, Sweden)
Anna Eckerdal (Uppsala University, Sweden)
Kate Sanders (Rhode Island College, USA)
Carol Zander (University of Washington Bothell, USA)
Folk Pedagogy and the Geek Gene: Geekiness Quotient
SPEAKER: Kate Sanders

ABSTRACT. In a survey of the computing-education community, we find a range of beliefs about the ``geek gene'' theory. We suggest an alternative term, the ``geekiness quotient (GQ)''. The GQ, grounded in Gardner's work on multiple intelligences, is a hypothetical measure of the student's current computing ability. The GQ supports a moderate view of the geek gene: that students arrive in our classrooms with a range of computing abilities, whether acquired through background or through innate talent, and can improve their abilities through effort.

Jennifer Blaney (UCLA, USA)
Jane Stout (Computing Research Association, USA)
Exemplary Paper: Examining the Relationship Between Introductory Computing Course Experiences, Self-Efficacy, and Belonging Among First-Generation College Women

ABSTRACT. Computing self-efficacy and sense of belonging are known predictors of motivation and persistence. As such, these psychological states are important to study in order to broaden participation in computing. This study examined the relationship between (a) introductory computing course experiences and (b) self-efficacy and sense of belonging in computing, focusing on differences by gender and college generation status. We found that the relationship between some introductory course experiences and self-efficacy and sense of belonging was strongest among first-generation college women, which reveals the importance of considering women’s experiences in light of their additional intersectional identities. Recommendations for best practices in introductory computing courses are discussed.

15:45-17:00 Session 23C: Non-CS Students


Alistair Campbell (Hamilton College, USA)
Location: 613-614
Sami Khuri (San Jose State University, USA)
Miri Vanhoven (San Jose State University, USA)
Natalia Khuri (Stanford University, USA)
Increasing The Capacity Of STEM Workforce: Minor in Bioinformatics
SPEAKER: Sami Khuri

ABSTRACT. In this paper, we describe the Minor in Bioinformatics we created to better prepare students, especially women, in acquiring computational and programming skills. Our program was motivated by the fact that women are underrepresented in computer science and also in information technology as a whole. Also, bioinformatics training is in high demand. We aim to recruit biology undergraduates, who are more than 60% female, to the new cohort-based integrative interdisciplinary Minor in Bioinformatics program. By rooting this new computational program in biological concepts and questions, we plan to interest and educate biology students in computational methods that can be applied to complex questions in the growing field of bioinformatics. We expect that the Minor in Bioinformatics program will allow students to better prepare for the job market through a sequence of carefully designed courses, each teaching progressively more challenging concepts in computer science.

Nick Senske (Iowa State University, USA)
Exemplary Paper: Evaluation and Impact of a Required Computational Thinking Course for Architecture Students
SPEAKER: Nick Senske

ABSTRACT. Non-major education continues to be a growing area of study in computer science education research. This paper focuses on architects as an audience and the teaching of computer science by architects, who successfully applied computer science education research. The author describes the development and structure of a required computational thinking course with an average yearly enrollment of 69 students and how it applied best practices from Media Computation to improve student outcomes and engagement. A four-year impact study found that a flipped classroom model combined with peer learning methods was superior to traditional lectures and labs for improving student performance and reducing attrition. Comparisons of pre- and post-class surveys revealed an improved perception of computing and an increased interest in the subject – a positive outcome for a required introductory course. The author also studied the course’s long-term effects. Two years after taking the course, a majority of students felt they retained what they learned and that learning computational thinking helped them to learn new software and perform better in advanced computing courses. By taking into account how architects learn and revising in response to assessments, we believe our course structure and teaching methodology demonstrates an effective case for applying computer science education research within an architectural curriculum.

Linda J. Sax (UCLA, USA)
Kathleen J. Lehman (UCLA, USA)
Christina Zavala (UCLA, USA)
Examining the Enrollment Growth: Non-CS Majors in CS1 Courses
SPEAKER: Linda J. Sax

ABSTRACT. As enrollments in computer science (CS) undergraduate programs are booming, CS departments are struggling to accommodate more students while also seeking to bring more women and underrepresented minority (URM) students into the field. A particular burden has been placed on introductory CS (i.e., CS1) courses to navigate these important, but sometimes competing, realities. As CS departments employ strategies to manage growing enrollments and recruit more diverse students into their CS1 courses, administrators and faculty will benefit from knowing more about the students who take these courses and how they may differ based on their major (CS majors and non-majors), gender, and race/ethnicity. This paper presents findings from a national study of CS1 courses and discusses key differences in introductory course students’ demographic and background characteristics and pre-course experiences across these groups.

15:45-17:00 Session 23D: Capstone

Advanced Topics

Lilian Cassel (Villanova University, USA)
Location: 608
Dannie Stanley (Taylor University, USA)
CORP: Co-operative Remote Practicum Work Experience Model for Software Engineering Education

ABSTRACT. "The education of all software engineering students must include student experiences with the professional practice of software engineering." There have been many models proposed to include professional practice in computer science and software engineering curricula. Some schools simulate professional practice in the classroom with large term or multi-term projects. Others require students to engage in professional practice outside of the classroom in an internship or co-op program.

We have been exploring an alternative approach to integrating professional practice into our computer science curriculum. In our approach, we partner with an external software consulting company who employs our students directly. Students telecommute from campus and are engaged directly in real-world software development projects. We provide an academic advisor to help guide the development of the program, look for learning opportunities in the work, and mentor students.

We describe our approach, solutions to the challenges we faced, and the direct and indirect benefits of our approach.

Andres Neyem (Computer Science Department, Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile, Chile)
Juan Diaz-Mosquera (Computer Science Department, Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile, Chile)
Jorge Munoz-Gama (Computer Science Department, Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile, Chile)
Jaime Navon (Computer Science Department, Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile, Chile)
Exemplary Paper: Understanding Student Interactions in Capstone Courses to Improve Learning Experiences

ABSTRACT. Project-based courses can provide valuable learning experiences for computing majors as well as for faculty and community partners. However, proper coordination between students, stakeholders and the academic team is very difficult to achieve. We present an integral study consisting of a twofold approach. First, we propose a proven capstone course framework implementation in conjunction with an educational software tool to support and ensure proper fulfillment of most academic and engineering needs. Second, we propose an approach for mining process data from the information generated by this tool as a way of understanding these courses and improving software engineering education. Moreover, we propose visualizations, metrics and algorithms using Process Mining to provide an insight into practices and procedures followed during various phases of a software development life cycle. We mine the event logs produced by the educational software tool and derive aspects such as cooperative behaviors in a team, component and student entropy, process compliance and verification. The proposed visualizations and metrics (learning analytics) provide a multi-faceted view to the academic team serving as a tool for feedback on development process and quality by students.

Christian Murphy (University of Pennsylvania, USA)
Swapneel Sheth (University of Pennsylvania, USA)
Sydney Morton (University of Pennsylvania, USA)
Exemplary Paper: A Two-Course Sequence of Real Projects for Real Customers

ABSTRACT. Since 2012, over 1,100 students at our institution have participated in software engineering courses in which they had the opportunity to partake in “real projects for real customers.” Unlike typical one-semester courses or yearlong capstones, our approach is unique in that we offer a two-course sequence in which one group of students develops the initial implementation in the first course and different students maintain and improve the code in the second.

This paper presents our experiences in teaching these courses and serves as a blueprint for other educators who wish to create similar interventions for their students over a two-course sequence. In addition to describing our motivation and the structure of the courses, we discuss how we address issues of scale by using students as Project Managers and the benefits of doing so. We also present empirical evidence that the projects help students feel more confident working in groups, using the agile development process, and working with a real-world customer.

15:45-17:00 Session 23E: Online Learning

Learning / Instructional Styles

Daniel Joyce (Villanova University, USA)
Location: 609
Ada S. Kim (university of washington, USA)
Andrew J. Ko (university of washington, USA)
A Pedagogical Analysis of Online Coding Tutorials

ABSTRACT. Online coding tutorials are increasingly popular among learners, but we still have little knowledge of their quality. To address this gap, we derived several dimensions of pedagogical effectiveness from the learning sciences and education literature and analyzed a large sample of tutorials against these dimensions. We sampled 30 popular and diverse online coding tutorials, and analyzed what and how they taught learners. We found that tutorials largely taught similar content, organized content bottom-up, and provided goal-directed practices with immediate feedback. However, few were tailored to learners’ prior coding knowledge and only a few informed learners how to transfer and apply learned knowledge. Based on these results, we discuss strengths and weaknesses of online coding tutorials, opportunities for improvement, and recommend that educators point their students to educational games and interactive tutorials over other tutorial genres.

J Michael Fitzpatrick (Vanderbilt University, USA)
Ákos Lédeczi (Vanderbilt University, USA)
Gayathri Narasimham (Vanderbilt University, USA)
Lee Lafferty (Independent Consultant, Australia)
Réal Labrie (Independent Consultant, Canada)
Paul T Mielke (Independent Consultant, USA)
Aatish Kumar (University of Amsterdam, Netherlands)
Katherine A Brady (Vanderbilt University, USA)
Lessons Learned in the Design and Delivery of an Introductory Programming MOOC

ABSTRACT. This paper describes the design and delivery of a highly successful MOOC that uses MATLAB to teach introductory computer programming. The decisions behind the curriculum and assessment strategy are detailed and the results are evaluated based on three sessions of the course that saw 80,000 active students, 2 million lecture views and 100,000 auto-graded programming assignment sets during the three sessions delivered in 2015.

Ashok Basawapatna (SUNY College At Old Westbury, USA)
Alexander Repenning (University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland, Switzerland)
Exemplary Paper: Employing Retention of Flow to Improve Online Tutorials

ABSTRACT. Online CS Ed Week and Hour of Code activities attempt to motivate hundreds of millions of student participants across the world in computer science each year. A key goal of these endeavors is long-term student engagement. However, if the activity experience is bad, it could have effects adverse to the stated goal. Thus, it is imperative upon designers to actively improve the online activity ensuring the maximum numbers of students are retained throughout the exercise. We present a simple proof of concept method outlining a means for Computer Science Education Week and Hour of Code online activities to identify and improve hazardous points wherein students tend to drop out. This is achieved by finding so called flow stoppers in activity retention that diverge from an ideal theoretical Markov chain model, and scaffolding the activity at that point to better support participants. Initial data presented indicates that even minor changes can have a significant effect on keeping a greater number of students engaged.

15:45-17:00 Session 23F: Panel: CSP
Location: 6E
Lien Diaz (College Board, USA)
Frances Trees (Rutgers University, USA)
Dale Reed (University of Illinois, Chicago, USA)
Richard Kick (Newbury Park High School, USA)
Chinma Uche (Capitol Region Education Council, USA)
Social Justice and Equity in CS Education - Inaugural Launch of AP Computer Science Principles
SPEAKER: Lien Diaz

ABSTRACT. The inaugural launch of the College Board’s Advanced Placement Computer Science Principles (AP CSP) course coincided within the same year of the announcement of CS For All, a bold national initiative that seeks to support the expansion of computer science education in America, and to empower students to learn computer science and obtain the computational thinking skills needed to thrive in today’s transforming digital world. The intent of the AP CSP course supports this initiative as it aims to promote social justice and equity in computer science education. The course is designed to be appealing to a broader audience, including females and minority students, who are underrepresented in computer science, thus providing increased access and opportunity for students to study computer science at the secondary level. This proposal brings together a panel of computer science education and subject matter experts from the AP CSP Development Committee, which undertakes the alignment of the AP CSP curriculum framework to the discipline’s current body of knowledge on teaching and learning computer science and also develops the AP CSP Exam. Members of this committee have been involved in the development and implementation of the course, development of curricular resources for teacher professional development, and state and national level efforts to promote the adoption of computer science courses at the secondary and post-secondary levels. With the increased awareness of the gender, racial and access inequities that currently exists in computer science education in our nation, this panel is poised to discuss shared experiences in efforts to address equity gaps, challenging the status quo, and poses recommendations for supporting efforts with secondary and post-secondary institutions to offer and teach a computer science course that increases participation and diversity. This panel will focus on the following objectives: • Discuss aspects of the AP CSP course and assessment that are aligned with the CS For All initiative supporting social justice and equity in computer science education. • Discuss recruitment efforts and instructional strategies that promote engagement with underrepresented students in computer science. • Discuss successes and challenges with promoting increased participation and diversity in computer science at the secondary and post-secondary levels.

15:45-17:00 Session 23G: Panel: CYBER
Location: 602-604
Richard Weiss (The Evergreen State College, USA)
Xenia Mountrouidou (College of Charleston, USA)
Jens Mache (Lewis and Clark College, USA)
Casey O'Brien (National Cyber League, USA)
The Passion, Beauty, and Joy of Teaching and Learning Cybersecurity

ABSTRACT. In the ACM/ IEEE Model Curriculum of 2013, cybersecurity became a new core knowledge area. According to a Cisco report [1] there will be one million jobs in the cybersecurity field in 2016 that will go unfilled. Currently, cybersecurity education is struggling to keep up not only with producing more experts in the field, but also with the fast pace of technology evolution, so it is difficult for faculty to teach it. Nevertheless, it is exciting and relevant, and there are many experiential ways to teach it rather than reading a standard textbook. In addition to addressing the need for more students, we also want a more diverse workforce.

This panel presents several approaches to revealing the excitement and relevance of the field to more students. Our suggestions address three aspects: 1) Passion- making the study rewarding for everybody through puzzles and games, 2) Beauty - making the study inviting and relevant through interdisciplinary topics, and 3) Joy - making teaching hands-on exercises easy to access & assess (through VMs in the cloud).

We will be presenting three diverse solutions to teaching Cybersecurity with current, emerging technologies and making it appealing to undergraduate students. The first approach is using Capture the Flag Competitions (CTFs) and industry aligned curriculum to bring the passion in learning about cybersecurity. Now in its fifth year, the National Cyber League (NCL) [5] has a powerful and proven model - provide an ongoing virtual training ground for faculty and students to develop and validate cybersecurity skills using content aligned with individual and team games - which is scalable across many industry certifications, curricula, job roles, and verticals.

The second approach is CyberPaths, creating a new paradigm for teaching Cybersecurity in the liberal arts, with general education modules related to law, policy, international conflict, management, and human factors. Furthermore, realistic experimentation on GENI [2] attracts a diverse student population from liberal arts institutions, eliminating the need for creating and maintaining local infrastructure. The project designs different paths for students to double major or minor in CS or complete a simple concentration in Cybersecurity, in accordance with the multidisciplinary education in liberal arts colleges.

The third approach is EDURange [4], which addresses ease of use for how we teach Cybersecurity experientially. Furthermore, EDURange offers automated tools that keep track of the thinking process when a student is solving a cybersecurity problem. This offers better evaluation methods and constructive feedback to the students.

15:45-17:00 Session 23H: Panel: UNDERGRAD TAS
Location: 606
Jeffrey Forbes (Duke University, USA)
David Malan (Harvard University, USA)
Heather Pon-Barry (Mt. Holyoke College, USA)
Stuart Reges (University of Washington, USA)
Mehran Sahami (Stanford University, USA)
Scaling Introductory Courses Using Undergraduate Teaching Assistants
SPEAKER: David Malan

ABSTRACT. Undergraduates are widely used in support of Computer Science (CS) departments’ teaching missions as teaching assistants, peer mentors, section leaders, course assistants, and tutors. Those undergraduates engaged in teaching have the opportunity to deeply engage with CS concepts and develop key communication and social competencies. As enrollments surge, undergraduate teaching assistants (UTAs) play a larger role in student experience and outcomes. While faculty and graduate student instructional support does not necessarily increase with the number of students in our courses, the number of qualified undergraduate teaching assistants for introductory CS courses should scale with the number of students in our courses. With large courses, the significance of the UTAs' role in students’ learning likely also increases. Students have relatively little interaction with the instructor, and faculty may have more challenges monitoring and supporting individual UTAs. UTAs have a major role in affecting climate in computer science courses. The climate in large courses has substantial implications for students from groups traditionally underrepresented in computing. This panel will discuss how undergraduate teaching assistants can serve as a scalable effective teaching resource that benefits both the students in the course and the UTAs themselves.

15:45-17:00 Session 23I: Special Session: ICER
Location: 607
Eileen Kraemer (Clemson University, USA)
Aubrey Lawson (Clemson University, USA)
Murali Sitaraman (Clemson University, USA)
Special Session: ICER UP CS Ed Research Workshop Summary—Essence of Illustrative Projects

ABSTRACT. The SIGCSE special session will provide an opportunity for new researchers in CS education to learn the elements of successful computing education research of different types through a series of exemplar projects. Specifically, this session will report on the findings and example, successful CS education research projects that will be discussed and presented at ICER 2016 UP (Understanding and Propagating) CS Ed Research Workshop, sponsored by the National Science Foundation. One goal of the session is to provide a way for proposers of computing education research to ensure that they have well identified education research questions and evaluation mechanisms that are appropriate for the proposal (exploratory vs. design & implementation) according to the guidelines in [1]. The purpose of the ICER Workshop is designed to focus exactly on this goal and report to the community. Since the ICER UP CS Ed Research workshop papers have the same deadline as SIGCSE special sessions, so a complete list of papers and workshop proceedings are not yet available.

15:45-17:00 Session 23J: Microsoft Supporter Session: Physical and Game-based Computing for CS Education

Thomas Ball – Principal Researcher/Research Manager, Microsoft Research
Peli de Halleux – Principal Research Software Engineer, Microsoft Research
Michael Braun – Educator Trainer, Microsoft Research

Physical Computing for CS Education with PXT

Thanks to Moore’s Law, embeddable microcontroller-based devices continue to get cheaper, faster, and include more integrated sensors and networking options. In 2016, the BBC and a host of technical partners, including Microsoft, delivered such a physical computing device, the BBC micro:bit, to every 5th grader in the UK. The non-profit Micro:bit Education Foundation (, of which Microsoft is a founding partner, was recently created to take the micro:bit global. Over the last year, Microsoft has invested in a new web-based programming platform for physical computing, called PXT, with the micro:bit being the first target ( Come hear about Microsoft’s plans for bring physical computing to CS education across a wide range of devices.

Game-based Computing with Kodu and the BBC micro:bit

Microsoft’s Kodu Game Lab ( is a game creation tool and visual programming environment for children. The BBC micro:bit ( is a card-sized microcomputer and sensor board designed to bring physical computing to kids and classrooms. What if we were to combine the two? In this session you will create a Kodu game controlled by the BBC micro:bit, and you will learn first-hand the different ways Kodu and the micro:bit work together to blend virtual- and real-world computing.

Location: 616-617
15:45-17:00 Session 23K: Oracle Academy Supporter Session: Oracle Academy - CS Curriculum for K12 and Beyond

Tyra Crockett, Sr. Manager, Oracle Academy

Join the Oracle Academy team to learn the many benefits available to teachers through free membership to Oracle Academy.  In this session you will learn of the many benefits available through the free Oracle Academy program, learn how to join the Oracle Academy program, and explore and get hands on in mini workshops with free Oracle Academy curriculum designed by educators for educators. We will also present our Short Byte curriculum designed for both younger learners making their first steps into programming, robotics and databases, and we will also present our comprehensive curriculum in Java programming and database development.

Location: 618-619
17:10-18:00 Session 24: SIGCSE Business Meeting
Amber Settle (DePaul University, USA)
Location: 6E
18:00-19:00 Session : NCWIT Reception
Location: Sheraton Diamond Room
19:00-20:00 Session : Community College Reception
Elizabeth Hawthorne (Union County College, USA)
Location: Sheraton Diamond Room
19:00-22:00 Session 26A: Workshop 301: An Iota of IoT
Location: 602-604
Bill Siever (Washington University, USA)
Michael Rogers (Northwest Missouri State University, USA)
An IoTa of IoT
SPEAKER: Bill Siever

ABSTRACT. Internet of Things (IoT) devices — networked microcontrollers with attached sensors and outputs (LEDs, actuators, etc.) — are becoming ubiquitous in the home (e.g., smart light bulbs, security systems), on the road (e.g., smart parking meters, traffic control), in industry (e.g., equipment monitoring, asset tracking) and in healthcare (e.g., fitness monitors, drug monitors). Consequently, IoT provides an opportunity to demonstrate the pervasiveness and social relevance of computing. Moreover, today’s hobbyist- oriented IoT platforms empower entry-level students to create meaningful, real-world IoT applications. This allows rich computer science topics, such as event driven programming, concurrency, networking, information representation, cloud computing, etc., to be introduced earlier in the curriculum. Most importantly, IoT examples provide a compelling context for students to hone their critical thinking skills while solving engaging, real-world problems. Faculty interested in including IoT topics face several challenges: selecting a suitable set of topics, identifying an appropriate pedagogical approach, and, perhaps most daunting, choosing a cost-effective platform that lends itself to classroom use. This workshop will introduce the basic terms and technologies in IoT, discuss issues that arise when including IoT topics in classes, compare and contrast the most popular platforms for IoT, and walk participants through several classroom-tested, hands-on examples using a classroom-friendly platform (Particle's Photon) where they create both Wi-Fi-based IoT devices and corresponding web apps. Participants will need a laptop (any OS) with Internet access.

19:00-22:00 Session 26B: Workshop 302: How to Collect, Analyze and Act on Learning Data in Computer Science Courses
Location: 616-617
Ananda Gunawardena (Princeton University, USA)
Sarah Heckman (North Carolina State University, USA)
Thomas Price (North Carolina State University, USA)
Workshop 302: How to Collect, Analyze and Act on Learning Data in Computer Science Courses

ABSTRACT. The modern teaching should be based on data driven techniques. Yet many of us do not have the resources to collect, analyze and act on course data on a regular basis. The process of collecting data from multiple sources, integrating and analyzing can be a daunting task. The purpose of this workshop is to help simplify this process. The workshop introduces participants to the basic process of establishing a data collection protocol, dealing with institutional review board (IRB) if applicable, setting up an interactive framework to help facilitate data collection, and developing customized dashboards to help support classroom teaching. We will also discuss ways to set up interactive reading and video viewing activities and student collaboration activities to increase student course engagement. These techniques can help collect student interaction data on a regular basis. The workshop will also discuss data integration standards such as Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) that can facilitate data integration efforts across data rich learning applications that are already in use.

19:00-22:00 Session 26C: Workshop 303: How to Plan and Run Computing Summer Camps - Logistics
Location: 618-619
Krishnendu Roy (Valdosta State University, USA)
Kristine Nagel (Georgia Gwinnett College, USA)
Sarah Dunton (University of Massachusetts Amherst, USA)
How to Plan and Run Computing Summer Camps - Logistics

ABSTRACT. This workshop will provide details on how to plan and implement non-residential, week-long computing summer camps for 4th – 12th grade students. Presenters of the workshop have organized summer computing camps at their respective campuses and in partnership with non-profit organizations for seven/eight years. Tools and resources used in the camps include: CS Unplugged, LightBot, Scratch, Alice, LEGO robots (WeDo, NXT, EV3, and Tetrix), EarSketch, and App Inventor. One of the main challenges that educators planning to offer camps for the first time face is not knowing all the details of how to plan the summer camp. The logistical details are often more challenging compared to the technical aspect of the camp. This workshop will address that challenge.

The workshop will include presentation about application forms, a timeline for planning, sample agendas, sample flyers, budget plans, a planning checklist, suggested projects, surveys, pre- and post-tests, evaluation results, lessons learned, and more.

19:00-22:00 Session 26D: Workshop 304: Engaging Students with Algorithms
Location: 613-614
Crystal Furman (The College Board, USA)
Sandy Czajka (Riverside Brookfield High School, USA)
Adrienne Decker (Rochester Institute of Technology, USA)
Dianna Xu (Bryn Mawr College, USA)
Engaging Students with Algorithms

ABSTRACT. This workshop provides participants with hands-on approaches to teaching common algorithms in an AP Computer Science A context, but common in CS1 in general. Teachers will explore strategies for teaching students: how to introduce commonly used algorithms to students; how to have students problem solve using hands-on techniques; how to determine which algorithm to use provided a program specification; write and modify the algorithm; and interpret the result of an algorithm. Together, participants will be looking at the commonly taught and assessed algorithms in first semester computing courses, especially those found on the AP Computer Science A assessment. A set of example free response questions from the AP Computer Science A assessment will be examined to identify how these algorithms are used and modified in solutions.

19:00-22:00 Session 26E: Workshop 306: Hands-On Cybersecurity Exercises That Are Easy to Access and Assess
Location: 608
Richard Weiss (The Evergreen State College, USA)
Jens Mache (Lewis & Clark College, USA)
Michael Locasto (SRI International, USA)
Franklyn Turbak (Wellesley College, USA)
Hands-On Cybersecurity Exercises That Are Easy to Access and Assess
SPEAKER: Richard Weiss

ABSTRACT. Cybersecurity is a topic of growing interest for CS educators. The goal of this workshop is to empower faculty to add hands-on security exercises to their courses. We introduce EDURange, a framework for accessing, developing and assessing interactive cybersecurity exercises. We want to reach and engage all students. The first step is to have interesting challenges that are easy to access. EDURange uses VMs in the cloud. No reservations are required. No software needs to be installed - students only need an ssh-client. Another step is to give students feedback on how they are doing. This is an important role for faculty and is not something to automate. Instead, EDURange provides tools to visualize what students are doing as they work on the exercises. This allows instructors to more easily see when students are stuck or heading in the wrong direction. Since cybersecurity exercises are often easy to understand but hard to solve, guidance is especially important so that students don’t become frustrated. In this workshop, participants will get to try EDURange and several exercises. Participants don’t need to be security experts. We will provide sample syllabuses for an introductory computer security class and an interdisciplinary security class, and we will show how our exercises can be integrated into these classes. Laptop required.

19:00-22:00 Session 26F: Workshop 307: Guiding Students to Discover CS Concepts and Develop Process Skills Using POGIL
Location: 609
Clifton Kussmaul (Muhlenberg College, USA)
Chris Mayfield (James Madison University, USA)
Helen Hu (Westminster College, USA)
Guiding Students to Discover CS Concepts and Develop Process Skills Using POGIL

ABSTRACT. This workshop introduces Process-Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning (POGIL) to anyone who teaches CS or related subjects. In a POGIL classroom, teams of 3-5 learners work on activities with a particular structure based on learning cycles. Through scripted inquiry and investigation, learners discover concepts and construct their own knowledge. Using assigned team roles and other scaffolding, learners develop process skills and individual responsibility. The teacher is not a lecturer, but an active facilitator who helps all students to be engaged and achieve the learning objectives. POGIL is an evidence-based approach, and has been shown to significantly improve student performance [2,3]. Workshop participants will work through POGIL activities as students, and work through POGIL meta-activities that are designed to help teachers learn core POGIL concepts, practices, and benefits. We will share POGIL materials for a variety of CS courses and concepts. For more information, see and, including sample activities for CS1, CS2, and other courses. Laptops optional.

19:00-22:00 Session 26G: Workshop 308: Modules for Integrating Cryptography in Introductory CS and Computer Security Courses
Location: 607
Yesem Kurt Peker (Columbus State University, USA)
Modules for Integrating Cryptography in Introductory CS and Computer Security Courses

ABSTRACT. Cryptography is a major area of study that provides mechanisms to achieve confidentiality, integrity, authenticity, and non-repudiation in information and computer security. For many not in the area of cryptography, teaching cryptography may be a challenge due to the mathematically heavy background underlying the subject. For students it may be intimidating to read about cryptography with all the terminology new to them. This workshop provides an introduction to basic functions and terminology of cryptography without going into the details of the specific implementations and the mathematics involved in them. The workshop includes four modules focusing on four main mechanisms of cryptography; namely, symmetric key encryption, public key cryptography, hash functions, and digital signatures and certificates. Each module in the workshop starts with a presentation of the topic and proceeds with hands-on activities. The presentations include descriptions of mechanisms as well as the reasons for using such mechanisms. For example, it provides answers to questions such as what does asymmetric encryption provide us that symmetric key encryption does not? Why are hash functions necessary in digital signatures? Why do we need digital certificates in addition to digital signatures? The participants will receive access to presentations and hands-on exercises as well as supplementary material such as assignments for students and questions for assessment. Educators who want to introduce computer security and cryptography early in their curriculum and students and educators who want to learn the basics of cryptography would benefit from this workshop.

A laptop is needed for the hands-on activities.

19:00-22:00 Session 26H: Workshop 310: Using and Customizing Open-Source Runestone Ebooks for Computer Science Classes
Location: 612
Brad Miller (Luther College, USA)
Paul Resnick (University of Michigan, USA)
Barbara Ericson (Georgia Tech, USA)
Using and Customizing Open-Source Runestone Ebooks for Computer Science Classes
SPEAKER: Brad Miller

ABSTRACT. Runestone is an open-source ebook platform designed to create and publish interactive computer science textbooks. (See Runestone textbooks support programming within the browser, code visualizations, and a wide variety of practice activities, from multiple choice and fill-in-the-blank questions to Parsons Problems (drag-and-drop mixed-up code). Multiple textbooks have been created for CS1, AP CS A, AP CSP, data structures, and web programming. The presenters have several years of experience developing and using Runestone ebooks. Several studies have demonstrated good usability and positive learning and attitude impacts on students using these ebooks. Runestone ebooks are highly customizable to meet the needs of individual courses and teachers.

The goal of this workshop is to help computer science teachers use and modify Runestone ebooks. The hands-on session will start by leading participants through use of ebooks as if they were students. Participants will next create their own custom course of any ebook in the library and will use the instructor’s dashboard to review student activity, modify the course, and grade students. Finally, participants will create their own assignments using Runestone’s active learning components, which serves as a starting point for authoring their own content in Runestone.