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Providing CS Learning to High School Teachers and Others, Ubiquitously

A key idea in CSLearning4U is that we can design CS learning opportunities. Simply wrestling an interpreter or compiler can't be the best way to learn about computer science. Throwing people into the deep end of the pool can teach people to swim, but there are better ways. We want to do better than a book for CS learning, and we want to design the phonics of computing education to integrate with the "whole language learning" of programming.

We are pleased to make available our teacher and student eBook for learning Python and Computer Science Principles!

The student CSP ebook is available at It doesnít require a login, but we recommend that teachers have their students login. Without a login, we store saved answers on the local computer, but if the student logs in, we save the answers by the studentís username. The course name is StudentCSP.

We recommend that teachers create a custom version of the student ebook for your students. This allows teachers to customize the ebook, assign homework, and view studentís progress, and even create additional assessments for students.

Teachers, please contact us at with the name and location of your school, and weíll send you the URL.

This project is brought to you by:
PIs: Mark Guzdial and Barbara Ericson
PhD Students: Briana Morrison and Miranda Parker
Masters Student: Kantwon Rogers
Undergraduate Students: Zhenyi Zhu, Lekha Surasani, Steven Moore


NSF CE21 Project: "Using Instructional Design Techniques to Create Distance CS Education to Support In-Service Teachers"

PIs: Mark Guzdial and Barbara Ericson
Visiting Faculty: Christine Alvarado
Graduate Student: Briana Morrison
Undergraduate Student: Stephen Moore
1 October 2011-30 September 2014
Advisors: Richard Catrambone, Ashok Goel, Wayne Summers
Collaborators: Tiffany Barnes (UNC-Charlotte) and Beth Simon (UCSD), Ria Galanos (CSTA Georgia Chapter)

We are creating a new distance-learning medium for computing education especially for in-service high school teachers based on ideas from instructional design and educational psychology. In-service high school teachers are particularly time-constrained (and thus need efficiency) and they are more metacognitively aware than other students (and thus able to better inform the project design). The new medium will combine multiple modalities, worked examples, and structure based on cognitive models of designers' knowledge. The research questions are that (1) the teachers will learn CS knowledge in the on-line setting, (2) the teachers will be more efficient at programming tasks, and (3) the teachers will find the materials useful and satisfying. Because of its focus on teachers, the project can potentially have broad impact, in particular on the strategies for training the 10,000 teachers envisioned in the CS 10K Project. The project will establish models and design guidelines that can be used for the creation of other learning materials, including materials for students in, for example, the proposed new CS Principles AP course.

  • Proposal
    • Summary: [PDF]
    • Project Description: [PDF]
    • References: [PDF]
  • Reviews: [PDF][DOCX]

GVU Seed Grant: "Driving Advances in Computing Education through Application of Educational Psychology Principles"

PIs: Richard Catrambone (Psychology) and Mark Guzdial
Graduate Student: Lauren Margulieux
15 August 2011-14 August 2012

The proposed seed grant is focused on creating examples of computer science instruction that are informed by modern educational psychology. In so doing, we hope to create a kernel for growing a research program and providing a set of papers that connect the computing education research community to new ideas in education, psychology, and learning sciences.

  • Proposal: [PDF][DOCX]
  • Brief Powerpoint introducing the project: [PPTX]


Conference Publications
  • Lauren E. Margulieux, Mark Guzdial, and Richard Catrambone. 2012. Subgoal-labeled instructional material improves performance and transfer in learning to develop mobile applications. In Proceedings of the ninth annual international conference on International computing education research (ICER '12). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 71-78. DOI=10.1145/2361276.2361291
  • Margulieux, L. E., Catrambone, R., & Guzdial, M. (2013). Subgoal labeled worked examples improve K-12 teacher performance in computer programming training. In M. Knauff, M. Pauen, N. Sebanz, & I. Wachsmuth (Eds.) Proceedings of the 35th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 978-983). Austin, TX: Cognitive Science Society.
  • Korhonen, A., Naps, T., Boisvert, C., Crescenzi, P., Karavirta, V., Mannila, L., Miller, B., Morrison, B., Rodger, S., Ross, R., Shaffer, C., User Requirements and Design Strategies for Open Source Interactive Computer Science eBooks, ITiCSE 2013.
  • Briana B. Morrison, Brian Dorn, and Mark Guzdial. 2014. Measuring cognitive load in introductory CS: adaptation of an instrument. In Proceedings of the tenth annual conference on International computing education research (ICER '14). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 131-138. DOI=10.1145/2632320.2632348
  • Briana B. Morrison. 2013. Using cognitive load theory to improve the efficiency of learning to program. In Proceedings of the ninth annual international ACM conference on International computing education research (ICER '13). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 183-184. DOI=10.1145/2493394.2493425
  • Barbara J. Ericson. 2014. Adaptive parsons problems with discourse rules. In Proceedings of the tenth annual conference on International computing education research (ICER '14). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 145-146. DOI=10.1145/2632320.2632324
  • Ericson, Barbara, Guzdial, Mark, Morrison, Briana, Parker, Miranda, Moldavan, Matthew, and Surasani, Lekha, 2015. An eBook for teachers learning CS principles. ACM Inroads 6, 4, 84-86.
  • Ericson, Barbara J., Guzdial, Mark J., and Morrison, Briana B., 2015. Analysis of Interactive Features Designed to Enhance Learning in an Ebook. In 2015 ACM Conference on International Computing Education Research (Omaha, NE, USA, August 09-3, 2015, 2015), ACM. DOI=
  • Ericson, Barbara, Moore, Steven, Morrison, Briana, and Guzdial, Mark, 2015. Usability and Usage of Interactive Features in an Online Ebook for CS Teachers. In Proceedings of the Workshop in Primary and Secondary Computing Education (London, United Kingdom, 2015) ACM, 2818335, 111-120. DOI=
  • Ericson, Barbara, Rogers, Kantwon, Parker, Miranda, Morrison, Briana, and Guzdial, Mark, 2016. Identifying Design Principles for CS Teacher Ebooks through Design-Based Research. In 2016 ACM Conference on International Computing Education Research (Melbourne, VIC, Australia, 2016), ACM, 191-200

Other Publications
  • Mark Guzdial and Joel C. Adams. 2014. MOOCs need more work; so do CS graduates. Commun. ACM 57, 1 (January 2014), 18-19. DOI=10.1145/2555813
  • Mark Guzdial. 2014. Limitations of MOOCs for Computing Education- Addressing our needs: MOOCs and technology to advance learning and learning research (Ubiquity symposium). Ubiquity 2014, July, Article 1 (July 2014), 9 pages. DOI=10.1145/2591683
  • Mark Guzdial and Valerie Barr. 2013. The lure of live coding; the attraction of small data. Commun. ACM 56, 12 (December 2013), 10-11. DOI=10.1145/2534706.2534710

Blog posts about project

Last modified 19 April 2018 at 2:44 pm by ericson