Peer-to-peer programming versus individualised programming: The real world
Govender, Desmond Wesley
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Does programming alone depict the real world scenario? It is often said, ‘In programming, One is the loneliest number’. Addressed in this paper is a strategy referred to as ‘peer-to-peer programming’, and the focus is within an object-oriented programming (OOP) paradigm. The paper explores options available to students at secondary and university levels who are engaged in individualised programming, and potential opportunities associated with peer-to-peer programming which resemble programming in the real-world scenario. Most programmers learn to program as individuals and then are faced with the real world, programming in a team. This research was based on confirmed observation, analysis and assessment against published data and information extracted on peer-to-peer programming and its influence on contemporary instruction and comprehension of computer science programming concepts. The research was conducted within the parameters of the programming information technology curriculum at three secondary and two university-level academic institutions. Gaining the perceptions of peer-to-peer programming was arrived at through using threshold concepts in Computer Science and an interpretive paradigm. Two critical questions were posed: What are learners’ experiences of programming alone and programming with a partner? How does peer-to-peer programming enhance programming in an OOP paradigm? Based on assessment and analysis of the data, our recommendation is to create an environment of peer-to-peer programming in an OOP setting which is similar to programming in a team in the real-world scenario. The benefits are not only better problem solving and better programmers but also the enhancement of good social skills.1
Govender, D.W. and Govender, T.P. 2016. Peer-to-peer programming versus individualised programming: The real world. The Independent Journal of Teaching and Learning. 11: 56-68.