EDEM665-20W (D) Whole Year 2020 (Distance)

Teaching Computer Programming

30 points

Start Date: Monday, 17 February 2020
End Date: Sunday, 8 November 2020
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Friday, 13 March 2020
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Friday, 21 August 2020


This course aims to equip participants to teach programming as part of the Digital Technology learning area and Hangarau Matihiko curriculum, including NCEA. The Technological area of Computational Thinking for digital technologies was introduced into the New Zealand Curriculum and Te Marautanga o Aotearoa for primary and secondary schools and kura in 2018. Students will explore what computer programming is, and various approaches to teaching it. Students are normally primary and secondary teachers, or those who lead the services for such students including professional development of teachers. They will develop research skills and investigate theories and practices in programming education. A key component is an individual research project to develop, implement and critically evaluate their teaching of programming. Although this course does not teach students to program, it can extend students’ programming skills.

You will need some programming experience before you enrol for EDEM665. You can check if you have enough programming expertise by trying the the pre-test quiz, which you are advised to complete in its entirety; simply reading this test to self-assess your programming expertise will be misleading.

If the test isn’t easy for you, you could do some learning online, or come to an in-person 3-day course planned for 13-15 January 2020, where we’ll get you up to speed in preparation for the course; https://www.dthm4kaiako.ac.nz/events/event/151/learn-programming-with-the-department-of-fun-stuff/

EDEM665 is normally offered in alternate years to students in a flexible learning mode (more information on UC distance learning is linked here). Flexible learning in this course includes online study in Learn (the UC Learning Management System,) and one on-campus intensive workshop. The design of the course is adapted to the community of learners who enrol to enable the formation of a learning community.  All assignments are submitted and returned electronically via the Learn LMS course site. The course is  to facilitate part time study by teachers in New Zealand’s primary and secondary schools, and students will normally undertake the assigned work within their teaching responsibilities.

In 2020 the on-site intensive workshop on the UC campus will be Wednesday to Friday 22-24 April 2020. Students are responsible for arranging their own travel and accommodation (UC information on temporary accommodation is linked -   here

The 2020 EDEM665 is offered in collaboration with SIGNAL ICT Graduate School. Please note that, scholarships from SIGNAL apply to only EDEM665 in 2020.

We are pleased to announce the course team for 2020 includes our award winning Professor of Computer Science Education, Tim Bell. The course coordinator is Cheryl Brown. The photograph on this web page is of Tim Bell leading EDEM626 students during their on-site intensive in April 2017.

Learning Outcomes

1. Demonstrate an understanding of what computer programming is, and what the key concepts are for beginner programmers.
2. Demonstrate an understanding of pedagogical knowledge for teaching programming to students in primary and secondary schools.
3. Critique and apply socio-cultural learning theory to programming education in schools.
4. Critically evaluate existing resources for teaching programming at school level.
5. Analyse and critique key literature related to the teaching of programming at school level.
6. Design, implement and evaluate new lessons to teach programming to students.
7. Examine and demonstrate an understanding of the implications of social and cultural issues including diversity and pedagogical approaches in programming education.


Subject to approval of the Head of School.

Course Coordinator / Lecturer

Kathryn MacCallum


Tim Bell

Textbooks / Resources

Due to the rapidly evolving state of the field and the nature of this course, required reading is set as the course develops. Recommended reading includes:

Robins, A. V. (2019) Novice programmers and introductory programming. In S. A. Fincher & A. V. Robins (Eds.) The Cambridge Handbook of Computing Education Research. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 327 – 376

Webb M., Davis N., Bell T., Katz Y., Reynolds N., Chambers D. & Sysło M. (2017). Computer science in K-12 school curricula of the 2lst century: Why, what and when? Education and Information Technologies, 22(2), 445-468. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10639-016-9493-x

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $1,884.00

* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.

For further information see School of Educational Studies and Leadership .

All EDEM665 Occurrences

  • EDEM665-20W (D) Whole Year 2020 (Distance)