Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Do excellent engineers approach their studies strategically?: A quantitative study of students' approaches to learning in computer science education
KTH, School of Computer Science and Communication (CSC), Media Technology and Interaction Design, MID.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4221-7326
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis is about students’ approaches to learning (SAL) in computer science education. Since the initial development of SAL instruments and inventories in the 70’s, they have been used as a means to understand students’ approaches to learning better, as well as to measure and predict academic achievement (such as retention, grades and credits taken) and other correlating factors. It is an instrument to measure a student’s study strategies – not how “good” a student is.

A Swedish short version of Approaches and Study Skills Inventory for Students (ASSIST) was used to gather information on whether we, through context and content, encouraged sustainable study behaviour among our students. ASSIST was used in two distinct situations: 1) Evaluation and evolvement of an online programming course design, and 2) Engineering education in media technology and computer science in a campus environment where approaches to learning has been evaluated and studied over time during the five year long programmes. Repeated measurements have been analysed against factors predicting academic achievement, and have been evaluated on a cohort level (not individual) in order to clarify patterns rather than individual characteristics.

Significant for both projects was that a surface approach to learning correlated negatively with retention. Students who adopted a combination of deep and strategic approach to learning performed better in terms of grades, ECTS credits completed and perceived value of the education. As part of developmental tools it can be beneficial to use ASSIST at a group level in order to see what kind of approach a course design or a programme supports among the students.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2016.
Series
TRITA-CSC-A, ISSN 1653-5723 ; 26
Keyword [en]
Approaches to learning, computer science engineering education, Computing education research, online learning
National Category
Human Computer Interaction
Research subject
Human-computer Interaction
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-194208ISBN: 978-91-7729-156-6OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-194208DiVA: diva2:1040034
Public defence
2016-11-18, F3, Lindstedtsvägen 26, Stockholm, 13:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

QC 20161028

Available from: 2016-10-28 Created: 2016-10-19 Last updated: 2016-11-01Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. A strategic approach to learning rewards first-year engineering students
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A strategic approach to learning rewards first-year engineering students
2013 (English)In: 2013 Learning And Teaching In Computing And Engineering (LATICE 2013), IEEE , 2013, 143-147 p.Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

In a study investigating first-year engineering students’ approaches to learning and studying, a strategic approach to learning was shown to be the best predictor of academic achievement. A surface approach to studying was found to be a negative factor. A questionnaire was distributed to first-year students aiming for Master of Science in Engineering in either Computer Science or Media Technology in the beginning and the end of their first year of study. In the first instance 154 students (62 %) answered the questionnaire and 91 (35 %) participated on both occasions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
IEEE, 2013
Keyword
Approaches to learning, Engineering students
National Category
Computer Science Learning
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-123535 (URN)10.1109/LaTiCE.2013.40 (DOI)000324484000020 ()2-s2.0-84881089801 (ScopusID)978-0-7695-4960-6 (ISBN)
Conference
1st International Conference on Learning and Teaching in Computing and Engineering, LaTiCE 2013; Macau; Macau; 21 March 2013 through 24 March 2013
Note

QC 20131024

Available from: 2013-08-13 Created: 2013-06-11 Last updated: 2016-10-26Bibliographically approved
2. Gender neutrality improved completion rate for all
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Gender neutrality improved completion rate for all
2016 (English)In: Computer Science Education, ISSN 0899-3408, E-ISSN 1744-5175, Vol. 26, no 2-3, 192-207 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The purpose of the present study was to investigate if we could improve retention by redesigning an online programming course from a gender perspective, while maintaining the focus on preferable and sustainable learning approaches. The study builds on results from an earlier study that investigated the relationship between approaches to learning and course completion and involves 1067 students that responded to the short version of the Approaches and Study Skills Inventory for Students (ASSIST) in 2010, 2012 and 2013. Three principles for course material design were identified; gender neutral and non-biased messagesemphasize the interdisciplinary approach and link to everyday examples. Responses to ASSIST were analysed in relation to performed changes in the course literature from a gender perspective. The probability to complete the course increased with 7% points for all students, in particular for men, and decreased for students with a high score in surface approach to learning, especially among women.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2016
Keyword
assist, completion rate, course literature, Gender neutral, higher education, online
National Category
Learning
Research subject
Human-computer Interaction
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-194207 (URN)10.1080/08993408.2016.1231469 (DOI)2-s2.0-84988632542 (ScopusID)
Note

QC 20161024

Available from: 2016-10-19 Created: 2016-10-19 Last updated: 2016-10-26Bibliographically approved
3. Surface approachers question their education
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Surface approachers question their education
2015 (English)In: 43rd Annual SEFI Conference, June 29 - July 2, 2015, Orléans, France, European Society for Engineering Education (SEFI) , 2015Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

For the last ten years, out of a total of 1500 students who were admitted to the five- year Master of Science in Engineering in Computer Science (CS) at KTH - Royal Institute of Technology, only 20% graduated within the nominal study period + 1 year. Even though retention is low, employability is high: for 97% of the graduated students the education have lead to employment and 87% got employed already before graduation, which is a reason for the low retention.

In this study we investigated if students’ approaches to learning in their penultimate semester of a master program in computer science engineering can be associated with their study results. The focus of the study can be concluded in the research question; whether students who graduate in time differ from their peers in terms of approaches to learning, study results or how useful they perceive skills learned during their education. For students’ approaches we used the short version of Approaches and Study Skills Inventory for Students (ASSIST). For study results we used both finished Master’s thesis, and graduation diploma. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
European Society for Engineering Education (SEFI), 2015
Keyword
Approaches to learning, Computer science engineering education
National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
Education and Communication in the Technological Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-186128 (URN)2-s2.0-84968736395 (ScopusID)
Conference
SEFI 2015 Annual Conference
Note

QC 20160512

Available from: 2016-05-02 Created: 2016-05-02 Last updated: 2016-11-29Bibliographically approved
4. Student Approaches to Learning in Relation to Online Course Completion
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Student Approaches to Learning in Relation to Online Course Completion
Show others...
2013 (English)In: Canadian Journal of Higher Education, ISSN 0316-1218, Vol. 43, no 3, 1-18 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study investigates the relationship between approaches to studying and course completion in two online preparatory university courses in math- ematics and computer programming. The students participating in the two courses are alike in age, gender, and approaches to learning. Four hundred and ninety-three students participating in these courses answered the short version of the Approaches and Study Skills Inventory for Students (ASSIST). Results show that students demonstrating a deep approach to learning in ei- ther course are more likely to complete. In the mathematics course, a com- bination of deep and strategic approaches correlates positively with course completion. In the programming course, students who demonstrate a surface approach are less likely to complete. These results are in line with the inten- tions of the course designers, but they also suggest ways to improve these courses. Furthermore, the study demonstrates that ASSIST can be used to evaluate course design. 

Abstract [fr]

Cette recherche examine la relation entre les différentes approches envers les études et la réussite des cours adoptées par les étudiants de deux différents cours universitaires offerts en ligne : l’un en mathématiques, l’autre en programmation. Dans les deux cours, les participants présentent les mêmes caractéristiques quant à l’âge, au sexe et à l’attitude vis-à-vis des études. Quatre cent quatre-vingt-treize étudiants inscrits à ces cours ont répondu à la version abrégée d’une recherche sur les approches et les compétences d’études chez les étudiants intitulée « Approaches and Study Skills Inventory for Students » (ASSIST). Les résultats démontrent que les étudiants qui abordent l’apprentissage de manière sérieuse dans l’un ou l’autre des cours ont plus de chances de réussir. Dans le cours de mathématiques, une combinaison d’approches sérieuses et stratégiques est positive pour réussir le cours, tandis que les étudiants du cours de programmation qui adoptent une approche superficielle envers l’apprentissage présentent moins de chance de réussite. Bien que ces résultats soient conformes aux intentions des créateurs de ces cours, ils proposent aussi certaines améliorations possibles. L’étude démontre qu’on peut aussi utiliser ASSIST pour l’évaluation de la conception de cours. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Canadian Society for the Study of Higher Education, 2013
Keyword
approaches to learning online course completion
National Category
Learning
Research subject
Human-computer Interaction
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-164855 (URN)
Projects
Samverkansprojekt mellan NADA, MND och Institutionen för pedagogik och didaktik
Note

QC 20150420

Available from: 2015-04-20 Created: 2015-04-20 Last updated: 2016-10-26Bibliographically approved
5. Lärstrategier på längden och tvären
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Lärstrategier på längden och tvären
2015 (Swedish)In: 5:e Utvecklingskonferensen för Sveriges ingenjörsutbildningar, Uppsala universitet, Uppsala universitet, 2015Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [sv]

Studiestrategier påverkar vad studenter får ut av sin utbildning. Vi har genomfört enkätstudier (ASSIST och RSPQ) för att mäta strategierna hos civilingenjörsstudenter på två olika program (Datateknik respektive Medicinsk teknik) på KTH. Resultaten visar att för denna tämligen homogena studentgrupp finns det inga större skillnader mellan årskurser eller program, men studenter med ytinriktad studiestrategi kommer efter eller hoppar av i större utsträckning än andra. Eftersom det åtminstone går att normalisera studiestrategier är det viktigt att arbeta för att normen är konstruktiv, det vill säga minska inslaget av ytinriktade strategier. De bägge instrumenten korrelerar runt 0,5 med varandra och enstaka frågor går att ifrågasätta, varför tolkningar av enstaka mätningar bör göras med försiktighet. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala universitet, 2015
National Category
Learning
Research subject
Education and Communication in the Technological Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-176459 (URN)
Conference
5:e Utvecklingskonferensen för Sveriges ingenjörsutbildningar, Uppsala universitet,18 – 19 november 2015
Note

QC 20160105

Available from: 2015-11-05 Created: 2015-11-05 Last updated: 2016-11-22Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

Svedin_fulltext(1723 kB)19 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT01.pdfFile size 1723 kBChecksum SHA-512
eb80c343712f579156e36dbb5f5e18f55eb7fd7bc6a732d6e3fcc478749a6aa5045a42bad374ac724df1cad6950ce9112530850ef60ef609d7749ccb653bff66
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Svedin, Maria
By organisation
Media Technology and Interaction Design, MID
Human Computer Interaction

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 19 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Total: 155 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link