Context as support for learning computer organization

Allison Elliott Tew, Brian Dorn, William D. Leahy, Mark Guzdial

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


The ubiquity of personal computational devices in the lives of today's students presents a meaningful context for courses in computer organization beyond the general-purpose or imaginary processors routinely used. This article presents results of a comparative study examining student performance in a conventional organization course and in one that has been contextualized using a personal gaming platform as the pedagogical architecture. We find minimal differences in student learning but significant motivation and engagement gains for those in the contextualized course.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number8
JournalACM Journal on Educational Resources in Computing
Issue number3
StatePublished - Oct 1 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Computer organization
  • Context
  • Course design

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science(all)


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