Introducing making-thinking-visible in a programming course to help students develop their programming thinking

Project Details


Although programming has been known as a complex form of human behavior, existing programming courses tend to observe learning performance according to only the answer codes to programming exercises. In our previous programming courses, we found that many students usually regard programming as a mapping from given problems to answer codes and thus lack the ability to think how to program from scratch by themselves. Therefore, they often have difficulties in resolving transformed problems and developing their programs by different approaches or in different languages. To address this issue, we plan to introduce the making-thinking-visible developed by Project Zero at Harvard University to understand the thinking process of students' programming. We will design thinking modules for our code examples and programming exercises and help students concretely write down their thinking according to these thinking modules in class. It can help students clarify the root causes of their coding errors and think of the solution without the problem-answer mapping. We will also use cooperative learning and heterogeneous grouping to encourage gifted students to share their thinking processes with teammates and improve their programming by explaining ideas in words. On the other hand, teammates can learn to develop their programming thinking by learning from those gifted students.
Effective start/end date1/08/2231/07/23

UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This project contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 4 - Quality Education


  • programming
  • making-thinking-visible
  • computational thinking


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