Submitting Campus

Daytona Beach


Engineering Fundamentals

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication/Presentation Date



The instructional design for modules in the study was based on the evidence that learning a programming language is analogous to students acquiring a second language, and utilized tools from Second Language Acquisition (SLA) theory. A programming language has vocabulary, syntax, grammar and communicative outcomes that must be sufficiently developed for the learner to function successfully in the environment that utilizes the language. This proposed study utilized an SLA approach to programming language in a blended learning environment. Modifications to the course pedagogy included breaking the course topics into video lessons focusing on basic programming vocabulary, grammar, and syntax. These videos had opportunities for the students to practice new commands and dynamically apply the grammatical programming rules introduced in the lesson. Student performance in sections using the SLA approach will be compared with that of students in unaltered programming sections using student survey responses, class participation and course grades.


Tuscaloosa, Alabama

Required Publisher’s Statement

Cunningham, R., Sanjuan E.P., Frederick, C., Sun, L., & Ding, L., "A Second Language Acquisition Approach to Learning Programming Languages," ASEE SE Section Annual Conference, Tuscaloosa, AL, March 13-15, 2016.