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Visual and Textual Programming Languages: A Systematic Review of the Literature

by   Mark Noone, et al.
Maynooth University

It is well documented, and has been the topic of much research, that Computer Science courses tend to have higher than average drop out rates at third level. This is a problem that needs to be addressed with urgency but also caution. The required number of Computer Science graduates is growing every year but the number of graduates is not meeting this demand and one way that this problem can be alleviated is to encourage students at an early age towards studying Computer Science courses. This paper presents a systematic literature review on the role of visual and textual programming languages when learning to program, particularly as a first programming language. The approach is systematic, in that a structured search of electronic resources has been conducted, and the results are presented and quantitatively analysed. This study will give insight into whether or not the current approaches to teaching young learners programming are viable, and examines what we can do to increase the interest and retention of these students as they progress through their education.


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