Session 5H: An Introduction to Conducting Quantitative K-12 Computing Education Research
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Fri Mar 13, 2020
Special Session


With the advent of computing education in primary and secondary schools, more research will be needed to determine the best way for students to learn how to think computationally and to design and develop software. As a field, computer science education researchers have been predominantly individuals who are steeped in content knowledge, but often have not had formal training in well-established educational research practices. Likewise, many also focus their research on undergraduate students in their own area of teaching. As the need for research into K-12 computing education grows, so does the opportunity for conducting quantitative studies in the field.

In this special session, the presenters will present a broad overview of how to conduct and evaluate quantitative computing education research. The presenters will spend approximately 15 minutes on each of the 4 key areas: designing a study, implementing a study and collecting data, analyzing and interpreting results, and reporting on the study. The remainder of the time will be as a question and answer period with the audience.

Since there is considerable overlap between computing education research at the primary/secondary and post-secondary levels, those new to research at the post-secondary level may also benefit from learning about form design, implementation, and reporting of research studies. Key takeaways for this session will include a basic understanding of K-12 computing education research from start to finish as well as a list of well-vetted resources to enable new researchers to explore and learn more.

Monica M. McGill Associate Professor, Knox College
Adrienne Decker University at Buffalo
Ryan Torbey Project Specialist, Texas Advanced Computing Center, University of Texas at Austin
Rebecca Vivian Research Fellow, The University of Adelaide