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IJIET 2023 Vol.13(9): 1445-1451
doi: 10.18178/ijiet.2023.13.9.1948

A Study of Phrase Fill-in-Blank Problem for Learning Basic C Programming

Xiqin Lu, Nobuo Funabiki*, Annisa Anggun Puspitasari, and Kiyoshi Ueda

Manuscript received July 8, 2022; revised August 12, 2022; accepted September 19, 2022.

Abstract—In a lot of universities across the world, C programming is taught to novice students in the first programming course. To assist their self-studies, we have developed C programming learning assistant system (CPLAS) that offers various programming problems with different learning goals where any answer from a student is automatically marked at the system. In this paper, we studied the phrase fill-in-blank problem (PFP) in CPLAS for learning basic C programming. A PFP instance gives a source code where several key phrases (set of elements) are blanked and requests to fill in them by a student. The correctness of answers is checked through string matching with the original ones. For evaluations, we generated 22 PFP instances for learning basic grammar topics and logic functions and assigned them with previous 15 instances for recursive functions to 21 students in Okayama University. The results confirmed the correctness of the generated instances and found the weakness of students in C programming study.

Index Terms—Introductory C programming, phase fill-in-blank problem, novice student, self-study

Xiqin Lu and Nobuo Funabiki are with the Department of Electrical and Communication Engineering, Okayama University, Okayama, Japan.
Annisa Anggun Puspitasari is with the Department of Intelligent Mechatronics Engineering, Sejong University, Seoul, South Korea.
Kiyoshi Ueda is with the Department of Computer Science, Nihon University, Koriyama, Japan.
*Correspondence: funabiki@s.okayama-u.ac.jp (N.F.)


Cite: Xiqin Lu, Nobuo Funabiki*, Annisa Anggun Puspitasari, and Kiyoshi Ueda, "A Study of Phrase Fill-in-Blank Problem for Learning Basic C Programming," International Journal of Information and Education Technology vol. 13, no. 9, pp. 1445-1451, 2023.

Copyright © 2023 by the authors. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

General Information

  • ISSN: 2010-3689 (Online)
  • Abbreviated Title: Int. J. Inf. Educ. Technol.
  • Frequency: Monthly
  • DOI: 10.18178/IJIET
  • Editor-in-Chief: Prof. Jon-Chao Hong
  • Managing Editor: Ms. Nancy Y. Liu
  • Abstracting/ Indexing: Scopus (CiteScore 2022: 2.0), INSPEC (IET), UGC-CARE List (India), CNKI, EBSCO, Google Scholar
  • E-mail: ijiet@ejournal.net


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