Learning algorithms: tools and student difficulties




J. Ángel Velázquez Iturbide


The development of IT applications can support more effective learning. Its use is especially important for University computer training, as students are expected to use a wide range of applications during their training. Our research group has developed several applications for learning algorithms, highlighting the visualization system SRec and GreedEx and OptimEx systems for testing with optimization algorithms. The talk focuses on the use of the latter two systems. Apparently, its use is fairly simple and should contribute to more effective learning of various techniques of design optimization algorithms, especially greedy algorithms, heuristic and approximated. However, the results obtained by using them as a tool for conducting practices have not always been as positive as expected. Qualitative analysis of reports of practices delivered by students has revealed many difficulties and misunderstandings, mainly related to optimization concepts and experimentation. The talk will make a brief presentation of these systems, the difficulties and misunderstandings detected, the interventions performed and their results. The overall importance of integrating education systems with various aspects of teaching practice will be discussed: planning, materials, etc.



Seminario eMadrid "Aprendizaje de la programación". Aprendizaje de algoritmos: herramientas informáticas y dificultades de los a from eMadrid net on Vimeo.

Author's biography

J. Ángel Velázquez Iturbide

J. Ángel Velázquez Iturbide has a Ph. D. (1990) and a Bachelor’s degree (1985) in Computer Science from the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid. He has been a professor at the Computing School of the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid since 1985. In 1997 he joined the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, where he is currently Full Professor and director of the Laboratory for Information Technologies in Education (LITE). His research interests are educational innovation in programming, educational software for teaching programming and software visualization. Dr. Velázquez is a member of IEEE Computer Society, IEEE Education Society, ACM and ACM SIGCSE. He is also president of the Association for the Development of Educational Informatics(ADIE).

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