Building computational creativity in an online course for non-majors

Markeya S. Peteranetz, Leen Kiat Soh, Elizabeth Ingraham

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

In recent years, a growing number of universities have begun to offer specialized courses as a way to make computer science (CS) more accessible to students with little or no prior CS or programming experience, especially non-CS majors. One of the ways courses have been modified for these students is by supplementing the core problem solving and coding aspects of the curriculum with explicit instruction on computational thinking principles. These “computational thinking” courses are promising in that they ground computational thinking in discipline-specific contexts and emphasize application of computational principles. However, there is little empirical research evaluating the extent to which students learn computational thinking from these courses. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the impact of an online Computational Creativity course on students' computational thinking skills, creative competencies, and self-efficacy. Students in the Computational Creativity course were predominantly non-CS majors, and they completed four Computational Creativity Exercises (CCEs) that have previously been shown to improve learning and achievement. Results indicate that the Computational Creativity course was effective in increasing students' computational thinking knowledge and self-efficacy for applying computational thinking in their fields, but it did not have an impact on students' creative competencies. Additionally, students' reactions to the course and the CCEs were mostly positive. Thus, this study provides initial evidence that non-CS majors can learn computational thinking through the online Computational Creativity course.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSIGCSE 2019 - Proceedings of the 50th ACM Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery, Inc
Pages442-448
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9781450358903
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 22 2019
Event50th ACM Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education, SIGCSE 2019 - Minneapolis, United States
Duration: Feb 27 2019Mar 2 2019

Publication series

NameSIGCSE 2019 - Proceedings of the 50th ACM Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education

Conference

Conference50th ACM Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education, SIGCSE 2019
CountryUnited States
CityMinneapolis
Period2/27/193/2/19

Keywords

  • Collaborative learning
  • Computational creativity
  • Computational thinking
  • Creativity
  • Non-majors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science(all)
  • Education

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  • Cite this

    Peteranetz, M. S., Soh, L. K., & Ingraham, E. (2019). Building computational creativity in an online course for non-majors. In SIGCSE 2019 - Proceedings of the 50th ACM Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education (pp. 442-448). (SIGCSE 2019 - Proceedings of the 50th ACM Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education). Association for Computing Machinery, Inc. https://doi.org/10.1145/3287324.3287346