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Thread: need help in my project

  1. #1
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    Default need help in my project

    Hi everyone,

    Im going to do my capstone project next Fall semester 2011. I would like you to cooperate with us by answering the interview questions which will be considered as an important source that will contribute to the development of the application. The following paragraph will give brief information about our project.

    Our project involves developing an application for teaching Java. This application will have four parts which are teaching materials, revision questions, assignments, and assessments. Our aim is to create an application that helps students to learn Java in an easy and interesting way.


    Do you think students face some difficulties in learning Java? Why?


    What do you recommend to overcome this problem?

    What kind of tools you think that would help you teaching programming?

    Do you think using this application will make it easier for students to learn Java? How?

    Is it beneficial to use games in teaching Java language for adults? why?

    If there is such software would you like to use it as a teacher?

    Any more comments or suggestions for our application?


    Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to answer the questions

    please reply as soon as possible


  2. #2
    Crazy Cat Lady KevinWorkman's Avatar
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    Default Re: need help in my project

    This is interesting and I'd like to open it up for discussion, but this is not the forum for it since it's not a technical question. I'm going to move this to the cafe (where you'll probably get more attention).
    Useful links: How to Ask Questions the Smart Way | Use Code Tags | Java Tutorials
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  3. #3
    Crazy Cat Lady KevinWorkman's Avatar
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    Default Re: need help in my project

    Do you think students face some difficulties in learning Java? Why?

    Sure, but students face difficulties learning anything. Programming has prerequisites- math, logic, problem solving, some of which are almost impossible to teach. In any given introductory programming class, it’s impossible to determine where the class is with those prerequisites- some people might have had advanced calculus, others might barely understand algebra. Some might be able to solve a problem in an hour, others might not even understand what a question is asking- and all of this is before the computer is even turned on!

    It has also been suggested that certain people simply cannot learn to program: Coding Horror: Separating Programming Sheep from Non-Programming Goats


    What do you recommend to overcome this problem?


    Like I said, perhaps the assumption that it can or should be overcome is invalid. But if it is to be overcome, the solution probably lies in strengthening the prerequisites- but whose job is that? It also lies in making the fundamentals more interesting. That is our job, but you can't force a student into thinking that for lops are interesting. If a brand new student doesn't think hello world is at least a little cool, then there's probably not much we can do to keep that person interested in anything else.


    What kind of tools you think that would help you teaching programming?

    I actually do plan on teaching programming. If I were to start today, I would make heavy use of the Processing language, for reasons explained in this post: Processing



    Do you think using this application will make it easier for students to learn Java? How?


    If you’re talking about my suggestion, then the answer has to be yes (otherwise why would I suggest it). One of the “problems” with programming is that to do anything “cool” (like flashy visuals), you have to get through some pretty advanced topics (for Java, we’re talking Swing, Java2D, events, timing). Processing abstracts that stuff away and gives you a rendering loop. Which hello world generates more interest: one that prints “hello world” to a command line, or one that displays it in an applet?

    Once the student’s interest is piqued (with the easy flashy stuff), then you can introduce the more advanced topics that might not “look” as cool by themselves, but are required for anything really spectacular.


    Is it beneficial to use games in teaching Java language for adults? why?

    That really depends. Games can be useful because they incorporate a lot of advanced features used in other fields, but making it overly kiddy or concentrating on the specifics of a game can be detrimental. Obviously if you’re teaching a class on JTables, most people there aren’t going to want to hear about collision detection.


    If there is such software would you like to use it as a teacher?

    What such software? Like I said, if I were starting my teaching career today, I’d use Processing.


    Any more comments or suggestions for our application?

    There have been several applications that are supposed to introduce students to programming. I’ve used a few of them, and I haven’t really liked any of them. You shouldn’t have to “trick” a student into programming by covering it up with games (Game Maker) or stories (Alice). That’s just going to cause a lot of disenchanted freshman to change their major to business when they realize that programming is HARD. Make it interesting, make it visual, but don’t cover it up.
    Useful links: How to Ask Questions the Smart Way | Use Code Tags | Java Tutorials
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  4. The Following User Says Thank You to KevinWorkman For This Useful Post:

    JavaPF (September 28th, 2011)

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    Default Re: need help in my project

    thank you soooo much for your help and waiting for other replys ^^..

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    Default Re: need help in my project

    Hmm

    Do you think students face some difficulties in learning Java? Why?
    Yes I do, I think its cause the assignments are too little.

    What do you recommend to overcome this problem?
    I'd rather have 4 assignments; 2 reinforcing what I just learnt. And 2 doing the same as the preceding but also somehow with out confuddling me; teach me something I will learn in the next few lessons.

    What kind of tools you think that would help you teaching programming?
    Like I said lots of assignments, give them time to get more experience, make many mistakes and spot them and learn from them. If you can get them at an early time to see that an error can be fixed easily they won't be a mess when you get to teaching loops, GUI's, Inheritance.

    Do you think using this application will make it easier for students to learn Java? How?
    Yes it will. You should have the student learn everything you would teach if you were standing in front of them.

    Is it beneficial to use games in teaching Java language for adults? why?
    Not always but I can help sometimes. Get them calm a little and indirectly teach something. but like Kevin said don't over do it.

    If there is such software would you like to use it as a teacher?
    Hmm, I haven't tried any yet, just learning Java actually.

    Any more comments or suggestions for our application?
    Fun, simple, and lots of assignments. Teach everything never assume they will learn to spell if they can't read.

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