Assessment strategies for cross-curricular programming in secondary education


  • Ana Fuentes Martinez University West, Sweden
  • Justyna Szynkiewicz NTNU, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway
  • Majid Rouhani NTNU, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway
  • Kateryna Osadcha NTNU, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway


programming, Computational Thinking, Cross-curricular Assessment, Subject integration, K-12, ISCED2, ISCED3


The increasing integration of computer science and programming into formal school education is a commendable endeavor that has seen different implementation solutions. Sweden and Norway have opted for a cross-curricular model, incorporating the task of teaching and learning computing into already existing subjects, mainly within STEM modules. In-service teachers often struggle with teaching programming effectively and integrating acquired programming knowledge into their educational settings. Additionally, instructors need to understand and evaluate programming learning outcomes, taking into account the new curriculum requirements. There is a lack of clear guidance regarding how teachers could assess students’ knowledge and skills when programming becomes a part of their subject. This study investigates the assessment approaches of in-service teachers who have undergone a university-level professional development program.

The qualitative analysis of the teachers’ assessment plans reveals that traditional assessment strategies are adjusted for the sake of programming, leaning towards formative initiatives featuring discussions, presentations, and student projects, and to a lesser extent, tests and exams. With respect to programming, teachers’ assessment initiatives cover a broad spectrum of knowledge with different degrees of abstraction and granularity, from the particularities of coding and debugging to more abstract issues of algorithmic thinking and even program quality such as robustness or reliability. Higher Education courses addressing teacher professional development in programming might therefore integrate these strategies to support teachers’ assessment in programming.


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