Typing has long been studied in psychology and HCI, and strong cognitive models for transcription typing exist. The goal of the present research was to test if there is any correlation between students' keystroking speed and performance while they are programming. We present the results from two studies with computer science students conducted in different contexts. Keystroke timings were recorded while they worked on Java and Ada source code. Quality of their programming work was measured mainly in terms of completeness. In the controlled experiment that lasted six hours, 39 students undertook three change tasks on a 6000 LOC Java application. In the field study, data was collected over 6 weeks from 141 students while they worked unsupervised on Ada programming in first year laboratories. In both cases there were highly significant (P=0.001), moderately strong, negative correlations between speed and coding performance. With additional development, these techniques may have promise for user modelling and assessment as well as in educational diagnostics.
|Cite as: Thomas, R.C., Karahasanovic, A. and Kennedy, G.E. (2005). An Investigation into Keystroke Latency Metrics as an Indicator of Programming Performance. In Proc. Seventh Australasian Computing Education Conference (ACE2005), Newcastle, Australia. CRPIT, 42. Young, A. and Tolhurst, D., Eds. ACS. 127-134. |
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