If you are interesting in pursuing computer science education research for your PhD, please check out CANON Lab!
Computer Science education research has many different avenues. My work generally focuses on two things - understanding how learners think or act and creating and evaluating interventions. Studies involved in creating interventions involve designing an intervention (such as curriculum or learning strategies) based on extensive knowledge of learning theory and related work. We then perform rigorous studies to evaluate the effectiveness of those strategies. Our Comprehending Code project developed TIPP&SEE, a learning strategy for learning from example code. Our Scratch Encore project developed Scratch Encore, an intermediate, middle-school culturally relevant curriculum for diverse learners.
To understand how learners think or act, we can use an intervention or a tool to place learners in a specific situation and then gather data about their behavior or their thoughts. For this line of work, we explored written assessment questions that were based on students' own code in their projects and analyzed how the patterns in student answers for questions about their own code differed or were similar form patterns in student answers from generic code. The goal is to eventually be able to create assessments based on students' own code that would allow students to demonstrate knowledge of how their code works.
We are also developing quantum computing resources for broad audiences (either K-12 or non-professionals) in order to better understand what analogies / intuitions we can build about QIS key concepts prior to formal introduction of QIS / QC concepts.
Please apply to the University of Chicago computer science department using this link. Computer science education is considered part of HCI this year, so choose HCI and indicate that you want to work with me, and I will receive your application.