Designing Declarative Language Tutorials: A Guided and Individualized Approach

Authors Anael Kuperwajs Cohen, Wode Ni, Joshua Sunshine

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Author Details

Anael Kuperwajs Cohen
  • Macalester College, St Paul, MN, USA
Wode Ni
  • Institute for Software Research, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
Joshua Sunshine
  • Institute for Software Research, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA

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Anael Kuperwajs Cohen, Wode Ni, and Joshua Sunshine. Designing Declarative Language Tutorials: A Guided and Individualized Approach. In 10th Workshop on Evaluation and Usability of Programming Languages and Tools (PLATEAU 2019). Open Access Series in Informatics (OASIcs), Volume 76, pp. 4:1-4:6, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2020)


The ability to declare what a program should include rather than how these features should be implemented makes declarative languages very useful in many visual output programs. The wide-ranging uses of these programs, in domains ranging from architecture to web programming to data visualization, encourages us to find an effective method to teach them. Traditional tutorial systems are usually non-interactive and have a gap between the learning and application. This can leave the user frustrated without a way to move forward in the learning process. A general lack of guidance can lead the student down an incorrect path. To prevent these difficulties, we propose a guided tour followed by novel question types that both direct the student’s learning and creates a focused environment to practice individual skills. Lastly, we propose a study to test the hypothesis that this tutorial is quicker to complete and results in a greater understanding of the declarative language.

Subject Classification

ACM Subject Classification
  • Applied computing → Interactive learning environments
  • Declarative Programming
  • Programming Language Tutorial
  • Visualizations


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