Mathematics Ability and Anxiety, Computer and Programming Anxieties, Age and Gender as Determinants of Achievement in Basic Programming

Owolabi J ., Olanipekun, P. ., Iwerima, J. .


Computer programming which forms the major component of most technological inventions is perceived by most computer science students as difficult. Some researchers have also reported that failure rates in programming courses are between 30% and 40%. It has therefore become necessary to study factors that could influence achievement in programming. This study therefore investigated the interaction between some selected factors (mathematics ability, mathematics anxiety, computer anxiety, programming anxiety, age and gender) and achievement in Basic programming. The study adopted a correlational design with achievement in Basic programming as the dependent variable, while mathematics ability, mathematics anxiety, computer anxiety, programming anxiety, age and gender serve as the independent variables. Three scales namely; mathematics anxiety (r = 0.82), computer anxiety (r = 0.82) and programming anxiety (r = 0.82) rating scales were used for data collection. Data collected were analysed using Pearson Product Moment Correlation (PPMC) coefficient and multiple regression analyses.The result of the analysis showed that the correlation between mathematics ability and achievement in Basic programming are positive and significant. The composite effect of the factors under study on achievement in Basic programming is 20.8%. Efforts should be made to motivate students to improve their mathematics ability so as to improve programming performance and consequently improve efficiency in programming.

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