Use SVM to Diagnose Beginner’s Programming Misconceptions – Loop Concept as an Example

  • Ah-Fur Lai
  • Cheng-Yu Yang
Part of the Advances in Intelligent and Soft Computing book series (AINSC, volume 146)


The purpose of this study is to develop a web-based diagnostic test system of computer programming concepts utilizing support vector machine and fuzzy theory. The system consists of diagnostic test item management module, expert-based diagnosis module, on-line test module, and account management module. This study developed a series of diagnostic test items of the loop concepts, and used SVM and fuzzy Delphi method to analyze eight kinds of loop misconceptions for the beginners. In order to investigate the accuracy of this system, this study conducted an experiment. In this experiment, the participants take the on-line test, and then complete an inventory of frequent mistakes in their programming. Finally, the result of system diagnosis and the inventory are analyzed by means of Person correlation method. The statistical result indicates that system diagnosis is consistent with the novices’ self perception about their frequent mistake of loop concepts significantly.


support vector machine fuzzy theory diagnostic test loop concepts misconceptions 


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© Springer-Verlag GmbH Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceTaipei Municipal University of EducationTaipeiTaiwan

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