Students’ Misconceptions of Java Exceptions

  • Rami Rashkovits
  • Ilana Lavy
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing book series (LNBIP, volume 129)


This study examines how Information Systems Engineering School students understand the mechanism of exception handling. The main contributions of this paper are as follows: we provide an analysis tool to measure the level of understanding of exception handling mechanism in Java, based on the SOLO taxonomy; we present and analyse strategies to handle exceptions; we present and analyse solutions provided by novice programmers; the students’ responses to the questionnaire were classified and analysed in order to determine their level of understanding of the mechanism. The results obtained reveal that only few participants provided a solution that was classified to one of the two highest understanding levels, while many provided solutions that demonstrate only basic understanding. The participants had difficulties in utilising the advanced exception handling mechanisms, and in exhibiting a high level of abstraction with regard to the proper design of a hierarchy of exceptions.


Exception handling class hierarchy novice programmers 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rami Rashkovits
    • 1
  • Ilana Lavy
    • 1
  1. 1.The Academic College of Emek YezreelIsrael

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