New GTA PhD Scholarship Student
The new term is bringing lots of exciting new projects and people to the Steel Minions game studio.
One of these people is Simon Rose, who successfully obtained one of the highly-competitive Graduate Teaching Associate PhD scholarships offered by the university earlier this year. Simon was previously an MEng Software Engineering student here at Hallam and undertook an impressive masters-level project into children’s programming environments. This project not only clinched him the scholarship, but also won him a best paper award at ECGBL 2016 just days into the start of his PhD! This is an enviable achievement for any new PhD student and (we hope) a sign of good things to come. Simon will be supervised by myself and Dr. Tim Jay from Education, and based in the Steel Minions game studio as part of the Applied Gaming Technologies Research Group.
Simon’s PhD is exploring (visual) programming paradigms for young children (under sevens), and as a Software Engineer, Simon is in the position to be able to both create and evaluate alternative programming environments, which should make his research particularly interesting. There is no doubt that Scratch-like programming environments are becoming ubiquitous in primary education and are likely to get more so, but there are some questions being raised in the research literature as to whether a bottom-up “bricolage” approach provides the right kind of foundations for learning how to program. This is where Simon’s research comes in, making it a very timely piece of work too.
You can read Simon’s initial research paper based on his Master’s research here.
31 Oct 2016 / Jake / 0