The Influence of pair-programming technique on secondary school students’ confidence and achievement in computer programming

Karaoğlu, Habibe
The aim of this case study is to explore the possible influences of Pair-Programming Technique on Secondary School students’ confidence and achievement in computer programming. Within an 8-week implementation with 35 students in 5th grade, the students were divided into Individual and Pair-Programmers. The number of pair students was 22 and there were 13 individual students in the study. Both qualitative and quantitative data were collected in the study. The main data sources were interviews, students’ ratings on a confidence scale, and their achievement scores based on rubrics. The qualitative data were collected through interviews with 20 students who were either in pair and individual programming groups. The quantitative data were collected through confidence scale and achievement rubrics from the 35 students. Content analysis, descriptive statistics, and Independent Samples t-Test were conducted to analyze the data. The result of the study revealed that Pair-Programming technique was found to be effective for improving students’ confidence and achievement in computer programming. Pair-programming Technique was useful for students in terms of solving complex programming problems by helping each other, sharing knowledge and correcting mistakes. Moreover, the motivation, task completion time, quality of products and learning was revealed as positive factors of Pair-Programming Technique. Although negative issues also emerged during the implementation such as disagreements among pairs, the positive effects overweighed. As programming is one of the key skills necessary for the future of students with the changing needs of information society, this study contributes to the literature and practice by suggesting Pair-Programming Technique as an effective method.