A Programming Language Independent Platform for Algorithm Learning
Teaching People to program is a crucial requirement for our society to deal with the complexity of 21st-century challenges. In many teaching systems, the student is required to use a particular programming language or development environment. This paper presents an intelligent tutoring system to support blended learning scenarios, where the students can choose their programming language and development environment. For that, the system provides an interface where the students request test data and submit results to unit test their algorithms. The submitted results are analyzed by a machine learning system that detects common errors and provides adaptive feedback to the student. With this system, we are focusing on teaching algorithms rather than specific programming language semantics. The technical evaluation tested with the implementation of Mean and Median algorithm shows that the system can distinguish between error cases with an error rate under 20%. A first survey, with a small group of students, shows that the system helps them detect common errors and arrive at a correct/valid solution. We are in the process of testing the system with a larger group of students for gathering statistically reliable data.
KeywordsLanguage-independent programming Tutoring system Algorithm learning
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