Computer Science education is increasing rapidly in primary and secondary education. Discover how CodeGrade can enhance high school coding education!
Articles
June 27, 2022

5 reasons to use CodeGrade in your high school coding classroom

In 30 seconds...

The future of coding education is always growing and changing! For an increasing number of high school Computer Science classrooms, finding a learning platform to support coding education is crucial! In this blog, we discuss some reasons why tools like CodeGrade are suitable for K12 coding.

The demand for coding education has increased considerably in recent years, with more than half of all US high schools requiring CS courses to be offered. With courses gaining popularity and classrooms growing, finding effective tools to support coding education is hugely important.

Coding is a skill that is learned best by doing. Students are going to need support to practice consistently and to make mistakes. The downside of this approach is that without the correct tooling the feedback cycle can be slow and as class sizes grow, this method is not scalable. If teachers continue to manually grade all submissions, the workload can add up rapidly and be prone to human error, not to mention the all too common burnout that so many teachers face. Another downside is that students won’t be able to get the feedback right away while the concepts are still freshly taught.

This is where tools, such as CodeGrade could be a good fit. Here are 5 reasons why CodeGrade improves your high school computer science classroom:

1. Automatic grading

As a teacher, you’re probably wondering “How can I reduce the amount of grading I have to do, but still give my students the feedback they need to succeed?

Luckily for coding assignments, CodeGrade does it automatically. Our autograder will allow students to get instant feedback on their coding submission. Students are able to see how they can improve their work while coding, and try as many times as needed until they are satisfied with their work. As a teacher, you now spend much less time grading, and more time giving students tailored feedback.

2. Built-in content

For those teaching computer science for the first time, creating assignments can be intimidating. “Where do I even start?"

To give you a head start, CodeGrade comes with an Introduction to Python curriculum with 35+ fun and engaging fully autograded assignments designed together with Harvard-Westlake School. For those teaching Java, we have a built-in Introduction to Java curriculum with 40+ autograded assignments, which you can use to complement your curriculum.
As a teacher, you can pick and choose whichever assignments that fit your course best. We believe that all educators have their own teaching styles, and we support them all. Teachers can modify the built-in assignments to fit their teaching style and vision.

3. Create custom assignments

Not your first time teaching? Do you already have assignments you have created and shared over the years?

CodeGrade can be used as a tool for students to submit their assignments. When students submit their coding assignments into CodeGrade, all their code will be available in one place. Teachers no longer have to unzip files or run programs locally. Automation can be added to existing assignments as well, to make grading even faster. 

If you are using a learning management system (LMS), the submissions will be linked to the student account in the LMS. To maintain COPPA compliance, the teacher can create anonymous accounts for the students, where none of the student data is shared with us.

Find out how CodeGrade can enhance your high school coding classroom!

4. Features right out of the box 

Automatic grading is not the only thing CodeGrade does! Here are some features that can further help aid the student learning experience.

Built-in Code Editor

When you want to remove all distractions around the task at hand for your students, CodeGrade offers an online editor fully integrated with our autograder. Students can simply write their code, press save, and get graded instantly.

Rubrics

With our built-in rubrics, teachers can make grading explainable and consistent. Students can see ahead of time what is expected of them and what they should be focusing on in their assignments. Fill in rubrics by hand, or add tests to them and fill them in automatically.

Personalized feedback

The best way for students to learn coding is by receiving personalized comments. As a teacher, you can click on any line of the submitted code and give feedback directly. You can also easily create snippets so you don’t have to repeat yourself.

Peer feedback

Allow students to review each other’s code with CodeGrade’s peer feedback feature. This activity can help foster elements of deeper learning such as creativity and critical thinking.

5. Supporting educators

We pride ourselves on having the best support possible regardless of your license size. With a  passionate and can-do mindset, we aim to solve any issue rapidly and do our best to incorporate your requests. All the feedback teachers give us is used to continually build our platform!

The future of coding education is exciting and ever-changing. As a relatively young discipline, it is crucial that K12 students can learn coding in the most effective way possible. Equally important is the level of support coding educators receive. Learning tools and platforms like CodeGrade can help with precisely this.

Lena Hong

Lena Hong

Head of Growth
Lena is the Head of Growth, and is often the first person you meet on the CodeGrade team. Lena's educational background is in biomedical sciences and she previously worked as a university instructor in nutrition. She has since delved into the world of technology and education technology. In her free time she is often cooking, or reading about places to explore.

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