Special Projects grant scheme – March 2022 awards made

Title of proposalThe UK ACM SIGCSE Podcast
Name(s) and institution(s) of AwardeeDuncan Hull, University of Manchester
Date of Award13 April 2022
Amount of Award£4,800
DescriptionA podcast which interviews people who are changing the way we teach computing in higher education in the UK. Hear from authors of papers discussed at ACM SIGCSE Journal Club and find out how the latest research can help us improve the way we teach and learn computer science. Season one will speak to ten authors over a two year period.
Title of proposalIntrinsic Value of Computer Programming: Academics’ practices and students’ perspectives
Name(s) and institution(s) of AwardeeMaria Kallia, University of Glasgow
Date of Award13 April 2022
Amount of Award£5,000
DescriptionCommunicating the intrinsic value of a subject should be the primary focus of education and learning both at the school and university level; it is well established in the education literature that students who value what they are learning are more motivated and engaged. Nevertheless, research in computing education lacks insights into the way university teachers (e.g., lecturers, senior lecturers, professors) communicate the intrinsic value of computer programming to their students and which of these practices impact students the most. The current proposal aims to investigate and evaluate academics’ practices that communicate the intrinsic value of programming to undergraduate students.   The project aims to develop a framework that describes the way that learning experiences could be designed to communicate these values to undergraduate students. Therefore, the framework could be used to inform the practice of computer programming education at the university level both in the UK and internationally.
Title of proposalExploring Approaches to Combat Contract Cheating, Ghosting and Collusion Amongst Computer Science Students
Name(s) and institution(s) of AwardeeRebecca Strachan, Northumbria University
Date of Award13 April 2022
Amount of Award£4,504
DescriptionThe aim of this project is two-fold: firstly to provide a more in depth understanding of the extent and type of ghosting, contract cheating and collusion that Higher Education institutions are experiences in relation to computer science students. This will include an exploratory research project with the students themselves to understand some of the reasons why they engage in this type of activity. Secondly to bring together and share the best practice across the sector in terms of combating this and identify areas where further work is still required.
Title of proposalA Theoretical Computer Science Commons in the hybrid era
Name(s) and institution(s) of AwardeeEleni Akrida and Barnaby Martin, Durham University
Date of Award13 April 2022
Amount of Award£4,500
DescriptionThis project aims to bring together a group of educators from various institutions, all teaching in the area of Theoretical Computer Science, to share, document, and reflect upon their teaching. The main goal is to share knowledge and obtain a rich understanding of teaching practices in the documented discipline towards ultimately improving and enhancing student learning. The project will run in the AY 2022/23 and members will meet monthly, with several online meetings and three in-person meetings spread across the year (hybrid mode). The produced course portfolio will be made available publicly and we will aim to share our findings and good practice resulting from this project in relevant computer science pedagogy-related venues.

The next deadline is Friday 30 September 2022 – see further information.