Study: The Cognitive Benefits of Learning Computer Programming
In a meta-analysis of 105 experimental and quasi-experimental studies providing more than 500 effect sizes, LEA researchers examined whether learning computer programming is associated with cognitive benefits in other domains. This study tested the bold claims made by educators, policy-makers, and computer scientists that learning to program a computer will help students to become better problem solvers, creative thinkers, and logical reasoners.
The meta-analysis provides evidence for a positive, significant, and moderate transfer effect of learning computer programming to contexts outside of programming.
The extensive meta-analysis has been published in the Journal of Educational Psychology. Bits and pieces of it were presented at conferences.
- Scherer, R., Siddiq, F., & Sánchez Viveros, B. (2018). The Cognitive Benefits of Learning Computer Programming: A Meta-Analysis of Transfer Effects. Journal of Educational Psychology, doi:10.1037/edu0000314.
- Scherer, R., Siddiq, F., & Sánchez Viveros, B. (2018, April). Technology and the mind: Does learning to code improve cognitive skills? Paper presented at the APA-SIGCHI Conference Technology, Mind, & Society, Washington, DC. doi:10.1145/3183654.3183658
- Scherer, R., Siddiq, F., & Sánchez Viveros, B. (2018, June). Learning to code: Does it help students to improve their thinking skills? Paper presented at the Conference "Computational Thinking Education", Hong Kong, SAR. Link