Purpose: "We present a new approach to help make computer science classes both more social and more effective: “lightweight teams”. Lightweight teams are class teams in which the team members have little or no direct impact on each other’s final grades, yet where there is a significant component of peer teaching, peer learning and long-term socialization built into the curriculum. We explain how lightweight teams have been used in a CS1 class at our institution, and how this approach, combined with a flipped class approach and gamification, has led to high levels of student engagement, despite the difficulty of the material and the frustration that is common to those first learning to program" (p. 392).
Findings: "(1) lightweight teams exert a strong positive influence on students’ ability to learn, engage in the course, and establish a sense of community, and (2) gamification elements (stamps, leaderboard, tokens) also exert positive influence on the student’s work ethic and self-reliance, however, the use of these elements needs further refinement" (p. 396).
Sample Size: 193
Participant Type: Students