TaskTracker-tool: a Toolkit for Tracking of Code Snapshots and Activity Data During Solution of Programming Tasks

Elena Lyulina, Anastasiia Birillo, Vladimir Kovalenko, and Timofey Bryksin

March, 2021. Published in the proceedings of SIGCSE'21 (A).

Abstract. The process of writing code and use of features in an integrated development environment (IDE) is a fruitful source of data in computing education research. Existing studies use records of students' actions in the IDE, consecutive code snapshots, compilation events, and others, to gain deep insight into the process of student programming.

In this paper, we present a set of tools for collecting and processing data of student activity during problem-solving. The first tool is a plugin for IntelliJ-based IDEs (PyCharm, IntelliJ IDEA, CLion). By capturing snapshots of code and IDE interaction data, it allows to analyze the process of writing code in different languages -- Python, Java, Kotlin, and C++. The second tool is designed for the post-processing of data collected by the plugin and is capable of basic analysis and visualization. To validate and showcase the toolkit, we present a dataset collected by our tools. It consists of records of activity and IDE interaction events during solution of programming tasks by 148 participants of different ages and levels of programming experience. We propose several directions for further exploration of the dataset.

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