Untraceable: A Videogame Designed to Teach Programming Terms and Concepts

Authors

  • Christopher Elcombe

Abstract

The “Untraceable” project is designed to teach students the concepts, themes, and terminology of computer programming within the Ontario high school curriculum. It does this through a series of logic puzzles designed to teach students in grades nine through twelve the syntax and structure of a programming language in a visual setting with an enjoyable narrative. Students are placed in a futuristic world, and guide a protagonist with psychic abilities. Players are captured by the government, and forced to develop their powers through a series of programming puzzles as they team up with another captive psychic to try to escape. The game is created using Python, Cocos2D version 0.6.0, Pyglet, and other software to generate a game with graphical and musical content. The game will be tested with computer science students in an Ontario high school to evaluate the efficacy of gaming as a teaching tool, as well as to explore the effects of graphics, sound, narrative, and gameplay as components in a learning environment. The final iteration of the project will address any flaws found by students, and a user study will offer project reflections as well as suggestions to future researchers.

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Abstracts & Posters