Seeing Is Understanding: The Effect of Visualisation in Understanding Programming Concepts

 
9781621546825: Seeing Is Understanding: The Effect of Visualisation in Understanding Programming Concepts
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Seeing is Understanding details a four year research study into how visualisations can support learning. It reports on a qualitative instrumental collective case study in which five computer programming languages supporting differing degrees of visualisation were used as cases to explore the effectiveness of software visualisation to develop fundamental computer programming concepts. Cognitive theories of visual and auditory processing, cognitive load, and mental models provided a framework in which cognitive development was tracked and used to explain failures in previous software visualisation studies, in particular the study demonstrated that for the cases examined, where complex concepts are being developed, the mixing of auditory (or text) and visual elements can result in excessive cognitive load and impede learning. This finding provides a framework for selecting the appropriate instructional programming languages based on the cognitive complexity of the concepts under study.

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