An Experimental Comparison of Middle School Students Motivation and Preference Toward Text and Graphic-Based Programming

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Williams, Stephen E.
Graphics programming; Motivation; Preference; Programming; RoboLAB; Visual Basic; Education
thesis / dissertation description
The purpose of this study was to compare seventh-grade students' motivation and preference toward text-based programming using Visual Basic, and graphics-based programming using Robolab. Motivation was defined by the My Class Activities questionnaire using the dimensions of interest, challenge, choice, and enjoyment. Preference was determined through team and individual student choice. This study was conducted with 122 students from three 6-week technology education classes. This study examined two hypotheses. First, middles school students will be more motivated when using a graphics-based programming language than text-based as measured by the My Class Activities survey. The second hypothesis for this study was that middle school students preferred using graphic-based programming more than using text-based programming in an introductory experience. Student preference was identified individually and within a team environment.