Reliably Classifying Novice Programmer Exam Responses using the SOLO Taxonomy

National Advisory Committee on Computing Qualifications
Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
21st Annual Conference of the National Advisory Committee on Computing Qualifications, 2008, pp. 23 - 30
Issue Date:
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Abstract: Past papers of the BRACElet project have described an approach to teaching and assessing students where the students are presented with short pieces of code, and are instructed to explain, in plain English, what the code does. The student responses to these types of questions can be analysed according to the SOLO taxonomy. Some students display an understanding of the code as a single, functional whole, while other students cannot âsee the forest for the treesâ . However, classifying student responses into the taxonomy is not always straightforward. This paper analyses the reliability of the SOLO taxonomy as a means of categorising student responses. The paper derives an augmented set of SOLO categories for application to the programming domain, and proposes a set of guidelines for researchers to use.
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