New Content for New Times: Pre-Service Teachers’ Exploration of Computer Programming in Educational Technology Coursework
Abstract: This study investigates the development of computational thinking skills and knowledge in pre-service teachers after they were exposed to an educational technology course that incorporated engagement with visual-based programming. Quantitative data were collected through pre-post surveys on pre-service teachers attitudes and understanding of computational thinking. Qualitative data were collected through course artifacts such as pre-service teachers' reflections and lesson plans. Results revealed that the majority of the participants successfully integrated programming into suitable content areas. Yet, they struggled to indicate supported computational thinking concepts and practices in their proposed lesson plans. This research has implications for designing educational technology courses that focus on computational thinking skills among pre-service teachers for the purpose of enhancing critical thinking and problem-solving skills in future K-8 learners.