Leveraging Open Source Principles For Flexible Concept Inventory Development

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Published In

Proceedings Of The 2014 Conference On Innovation And Technology In Computer Science Education


Concept Inventory (CI) assessments, which target high-level learning goals, have proven highly valuable for higher education research. These assessments have helped to evaluate pedagogical practices among individual instructors, both within and across institutions, and have hence elevated the level of discourse on education within the community. The success of CIs in physics has inspired similar developments in computer science, with a few CIs now developed for computer science courses. However, the development of a CI typically follows a burdensome process, requiring a significant investment to produce a single CI that may be difficult to deploy due to institutional curricular differences. Furthermore, as our field continues to be shaped by technological advances, a path to faster, more modular CI development is critical. This paper proposes an alternative CI development model and continues the discussion within the community about the need for, and path to, concept inventories throughout the computer science curriculum. Specifically, we explore the implications of an open collaboration system for CI development that would mimic the principles common to open source software communities, which have regularly demonstrated their ability to produce high-quality results.


concept inventory, assessment, community discussion

Published By



19th Annual Conference On Innovation And Technology In Computer Science Education

Conference Dates

June 21-25, 2014

Conference Location

Uppsala, Sweden

Additional Files

fac-comp-sci-55_dark-archive.pdf (106 kB)