Exploring the Teaching and Learning Methods for Data Structure Courses
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Garcia-Martinez, S. & Alain, v.T. (2010). Exploring the Teaching and Learning Methods for Data Structure Courses. In Proceedings of World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia and Telecommunications 2010 (pp. 2709-2720). Chesapeake, VA: AACE.
Retrieved from http://www.editlib.org/p/35021.
Upon graduation of a computer science program, students are expected to have the necessary knowledge and skills to develop software. However, they often experience problems in topics such as data structures (DS). The purpose of this study is to explore the challenges when learning and teaching them. This research is based on a qualitative case study through interviewing five instructors and six practitioners in the field. This work confirms many widely held beliefs about teaching DS. The findings can be used as an introductory guide for instructors who do not have the sufficient teaching experience. The main challenge that students encounter when learning data structures is the difficulty to apply theory into practice. Theoretical concepts can be explained through the use of examples, and including more opportunities to practice, such as laboratories. Some techniques to improve instruction include using new technologies, using the right textbook, programming language, increasing student’s interaction in the classroom, and considering student’s background and the pace of the class.
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