Document Type

Conference Paper


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Publication Details

Published in: · Proceeding PPPJ '02/IRE '02 Proceedings of the inaugural conference on the Principles and Practice of programming, 2002 and Proceedings of the second workshop on Intermediate representation engineering for virtual machines, 2002 Pages 101 - 106 National University of Ireland Maynooth, County Kildare, Ireland, Ireland ©2002 table of contents ISBN:0901519871


This paper describes recent experiences gained and initiatives employed in the teaching of Java programming to first and second year students in the Institute of Technology Tallaght from September 2000 to March 2002. It outlines some elearning, technological and pedagogical initiatives that were undertaken within the department and the resultant preliminary outcomes. The outcomes have been determined after detailed analysis of the results of a survey which was commissioned to determine the effectiveness of the initiatives and also to identify those parts of the Java language which were causing students particular difficulty. The students surveyed are currently completing their fourth and final Java programming module. The Java programming modules make up the software development stream of a 2- year National Certificate in Computing (Information Systems). The typical profile of a first year computing student in IT Tallaght is someone who has achieved a reasonable but not exceptional level of academic attainment in the Leaving Certificate and who has had little or no previous exposure to software development. The design of the Java programming modules, while geared towards novices, is ambitious in an institutional learning context.