Date of Award:

2014

Document Type:

Dissertation

Degree Name:

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department:

Education

Advisor/Chair:

Gary Stewardson

Abstract

The implementation of collaboration and the use of graphic organizers in the teaching of programming and writing in the elementary grades have proven to be effective instructional strategies. There is evidence that shows the students who are motivated to program and perform well in this content area are not necessarily representative of the students who are motivated to write. Since the organizational skills required in the two content areas are similar, there may be an opportunity to motivate students who engage in computer programming to become more motivated in writing. As a result, the purpose of this study was to investigate the change in the dimensions of motivation which are: challenge, choice, enjoyment, and interest of fifth-grade students to engage in an expository writing activity after being taught to develop computer programs with the same teaching strategies used in the writing activity.

The results of this study suggest that the teaching of computer programming was not effective with the intention of motivating the masses of fifth-grade students to write. However, there appears to be supporting evidence that teaching computer programming to fifth-grade students may help some individual students who are not initially motivated to write.

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