Research in Computer Science Education
The following is a set of links to material that discuss the issues associated with Computing/Computer Science/ Curricula. New material is added at the top of this list, so is roughly in reverse chronological order:
Created by Simon Humphreys
last edited May 31 2020 by Jane Waite @janewaite
Research in computer science education
These academic papers papers reflect on school-level education in computing.
For papers specifically about computational
thinking see our wiki page about computational thinking.
Find out about research by joining our CAS research working group Facebook group or our book club #CSEdResearchBookClub
Harnessing educational research, Royal Society and British Academy, Oct 2018. This short report is UK-focused, and about educational research generally not just research in computing education, but it’s a good call to action.
A classification of research into computer science education in school from 2005-2014: Initial report, Sue Sentance and Cynthia Selby, October 2015.
New horizons in the assessment of computer science at school and beyond: leveraging on the ViVA platform, Giordano, F. Maiorana, A. Csizmadia, S. Marsden, C. Riedesel, S. Mishra, L. Vinikiene. In Proceedings of the 20th Annual Conference Reports on Innovation and Technology in Computer Science Education -Working Group Reports, ITiCSE- WGR ’15, New York, NY, USA, 2015. ACM (in press).
Papers by CAS members or about CAS
- Sue Sentance, Simon Humphreys (2018), Understanding professional learning for Computing teachers from the perspective of situated learning, Journal of Computer Science Education. This article describes how Computing At School draws on situated learning theory to contribute to the development of Computing in the curriculum, evidencing both the journey and lessons learned.
Quintin Cutts, Judy Robertson, Peter Donaldson & Laurie O’Donnell (2017), An evaluation of a professional learning network for computer science teachers, Journal of Computer Science Education, Vol 27, Iss 1. This article discusses the PLAN C project, how it was constructed and evaluates it’s initial impact using data collected during the different phases. Private message, or email, Peter Donaldson for a pre-print copy.
Peter Kemp, Billy Wong and Miles Berry. The Roehampton Annual Computing Education Report 2015.
- Sue Sentance, Simon Humphreys and Mark Dorling. The Network of Teaching Excellence in Computer Science and Master Teachers. Proceedings of WIPSCE 2014, Berlin, November 2014.
Neil Brown, Sue Sentance, Tom Crick, Simon Humphreys, Restart: the resurgence of computer science in UK schools, in Transactions on Computing Education, special issue on Computing Education in K-12 schools, June 2014. Tom Crick blog post, Neil Brown blog post.
Sue Sentance, Mark Dorling and Adam McNicol (2013), Computer Science in secondary schools in the UK: ways to empower teachers, in I. Diethelm and R.T. Mittermeir (Eds.): ISSEP 2013, LNCS 7780, pp. 15–30, 2013.Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013. Keynote Presentation here.
Neil Brown and Michael Kolling, A Tale of Three Sites: Resource and Knowledge Sharing Amongst Computer Science Educators, ICER 2013. This paper discusses the CAS Online site itself. Neil also wrote a blog post summarising the paper.
Neil Brown and Michael Kolling, Programming can deepen understanding across disciplines, in Addressing educational challenges: the role of ICT, Manchester, July 2012
Neil Brown, Michael Kolling, Tom Crick, Simon Peyton Jones, Simon Humphreys, Sue Sentance (2013), Bringing computer science back into schools: lessons from the UK, in SIGCSE ‘13 Proceedings of the 44th ACM technical symposium on Computer science education, pp269-274
Tom Crick and Sue Sentance (2012). Computing at School: Stimulating Computing Education in the UK. In Proceedings of the 11th Koli Calling International Conference on Computing Education Research (see video).
Pete Bradshaw and John Woollard (2012). Computing at school: an emergent community of practice for a re-emergent subject, in Proceedings of 2012 International Conference on ICT in Education.
- Sue Sentance, Adam McNicol, Mark Dorling and Tom Crick (2012), Grand challenges for the UK: Upskilling teachers to teach Computer Science within the Secondary Curriculum, in Proceedings of WIPSCE ’12, November 8–9, 2012, Hamburg, Germany.
Other papers on the issues
Recent developments in computer science education research Excellent summary set of slides on some of the latest developments as well as work being conducted by the CAS Research group
- Finding time for computer science in an elementary [primary] day, 2018, a study carried out by Outlier Research & Evaluation at the University of Chicago, for code.org. Here's the blog post with a summary. "Could time spent learning to code also help students improve at reading, math, and science? ... This is an important research question. There is no definitive answer yet, ...but today, there is new evidence to support this idea.."
- Straw, S, Bamford, S and Styles, B (2017) Randomised controlled trial and process evaluation of code clubs. NFER
- Grover, S., Cooper, S., & Pea, R. (2014, June). [Assessing computational learning in K-12](http://tinyurl.com/j2z46uo). In Proceedings of the 2014 conference on Innovation & technology in computer science education (pp. 57-62). ACM.
- Sue Sentance and Andrew Csizmadia. Teachers' perspectives on successful strategies for teaching Computing in school. Paper presented at IFIP TC3, June 2015,and there is also a draft version of a fuller, more up-to-date paper here.
Blog post by Mark Guzdial (2009) about learning to program. This CAS thread discusses it, and contains many useful further links.
Experiences of Prospective High School Teachers Using a Programming Teaching Tool, by Louis Major, Theocharis Kyriacou and Pearl Brereton, Keele University, Koli Calling Conference, Koli, Nov 2011. It describes a study on trainee teachers and learning to program.
- Aaron Sloman's Scope of Computing CAS post (Mar 2011)
The Core of Computer Science: Alan Kay's triple whammy. (Blog post May 2010)
- The USA-based Computer Science Education Week home page has a great deal of material that is relevant for CAS: videos, curriculum documents, facts and figures, etc.
Talk by David Braben, the founder of Frontier Ltd (a Cambridge-based games company) at the 2009 Game Based Learning Conference, in which he discusses many of the issues concerning CAS
The New Educational Imperative: Improving High School Computer Science Education (International Version) , Computer Science Teachers Association, 2008
- Fred Brooks's wonderful paper on why computer science is properly thought of as engineering discipline. I usually hate papers that are about definitions, but this one is full of wisdom.
Computer Science: Reflections on the Field, Reflections from the Field provides a concise characterization of key ideas that lie at the core of computer science (CS) research. Makes an attempt to define Computer Science. Online book. Computer Science
Recentering Computer Science, Peter Denning & Andrew McGettrick or here
Great principles of computing (Peter Denning). Video, and interview.
-  What is lacking in Curriculum Schemes for Computing/Informatics or here
Computer Programming for Everybody
- The TeachScheme! Project: Computing and Programming for Every Student
- Curriculum and Course Syllabi for a High-School Program in Computer Science
- A Call to revitalize Computer Science Education
- Grand Challenges in Computing: Education