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CER: openHTML, a Scaffolded Web Development Tool to Support Elementary Computational Literacy

CCI Project Lead: Andrea Forte

About the Project

Drexel University, together with partners at Mozilla Foundation University of Nevada at Omaha, will investigate the impact of beginning web development experiences on learners' mastery and perceptions of computational skills and concepts. Using introductory web editors openHTML and Thimble in both formal and informal settings, they will engage beginners who have little or no experience with creative computation in constructing their first web pages and learning HTML and CSS. They will conduct observational studies paired with testing to understand learners' experiences with web development and identify activity patterns that signal recurring errors, recoveries, misconceptions and competencies and will use these findings to identify markers of error and competency in beginner's code.

Widespread computational competency is a vital component of a competitive workforce and vibrant economy. By lowering the barriers to comfort and competence with computing, this project aims to 1) engage individuals who may not otherwise appear on the computer science education radar in creative computational activities 2) improve the tools available to web development educators and learners and 3) extend scientific knowledge about the development of early computational thinking skills.