Moving Computing Education Past Argument from Authority

Computer science faculty usually make educational decisions without using evidence and research. Faculty in other fields tend to use research more. The earliest paper that I know that actually measured this was Clayton Lewis’s 2007 work that showed that CS faculty have beliefs about students that are in contradiction to measurable facts about them. The best work that I know on this question is Lecia Barker’s interview study with 66 CS faculty across the US, showing that research had little impact on their teaching practices. In contrast, a 2008 survey of 722 US Physics faculty found that 87% were familiar with one or more research-based instructional method, and 48% use at least one regularly.

Fiona Voss @fiona