Online Conference EAPRIL2021 (24.11.2021)

On 24th November 2021, Jeff Hennico, Robert Reuter & Armin Weinberger presented their study on “Factors Affecting the Teaching of Computational Thinking in Fundamental Schools: A Path Analysis” at EAPRIL2021, the 15th annual conference for practitioner research on improving learning.
While this study was not a direct product of our Erasmus+ project, it nevertheless sheds an interesting light on what teachers think about computational thinking in fundamental school. And it strengthened the links between two partner institutions.

Factors Affecting the Teaching of Computational Thinking in Fundamental Schools: A Path Analysis

Computational thinking (CT) in fundamental education is an emerging topic in research about educational policies and practices around the globe. In Luxembourg, CT was introduced as a learning topic in fundamental schools in 2020. This situation offers a unique opportunity to investigate how various factors influence emerging CT teaching practices. Based on a revised version of the Technology Acceptance Model (Inan & Lowther, 2010), a research-based path model of CT teaching was developed, emphasising the influence of teachers’ beliefs and readiness on CT teaching practices. It investigated the effects of demographic factors, teaching approaches, ICT proficiency, previous CT experience, and overall support for technology integration on readiness, beliefs, and CT teaching practices. The current study reveals that teachers are interested in teaching CT. However, they hold a widespread misconception (Fessakis & Prantsoudi, 2019), confusing CT with programming or technology use. ICT proficiency is indeed associated with beliefs about CT and readiness for teaching CT. Readiness for teaching CT, beliefs about CT, and previous CT experience are the strongest predictors for CT teaching practices. In line with Cuny et al. (2010), the current study highlights the importance of training teachers to accurately define CT and to identify good practices.