We report results from a large-scale nationwide study titled “Researching
Pre-College Factors that Lead to Persistence in Computer Science,” which has
been supported by the National Science Foundation. This retrospective cohort
study, including data from 6,044 students at 58 institutions of higher education
across the U.S., investigated, among other questions, the effects on students’
computer science related career intentions of designated computer science
classes in high school, and the teaching of computational thinking in high
school classes other than computer science classes. We specifically looked at
the effects of various types of in-school computer science classes (AP CS A, AP
CS Principles, non-AP courses), of grades received, and of specific pedagogies
in computer science classes, as well as in other classes.
What difference do various "flavors" of in-school computer science classes (AP CS A, AP CS Principles, non-AP courses) make?
Gerhard Sonnert (Harvard College Observatory: Cambridge, MA)