(Un)Confident Coders: What Gender Dynamics Appear When Canadian Children Learn How to Code
This paper reports on a mixed-methods study that examined the gender dynamics that could be observed when Canadian boys and girls learn to code in a formal classroom environment. The study involved sixty-four, sixth grade students in a suburban Toronto District School Board school who were taught basic computer programming skills using a curriculum developed by the PLAYCES lab at York University. The results showed that in all three classes, although the boys displayed more confident behaviours (e.g. willing to take risks while working, trouble shooting, persisting in the face of challenges etc.) than the girls, there were a few distinct situations in which the girls displayed a strong sense of confidence. The girls' behaviours were analyzed and linked to social contexts and social expectations.