Dodona supports homeschooling your programming classes

How about homeschooling your programming classes and exams in secondary and higher education during the current COVID situation?

The free and open source learning environment Dodona ( offers thousands of programming exercises for multiple programming languages. Teachers can create courses with learning paths adjusted to the needs of their students. They lay down a trail of reading activities and interactive programming exercises, set deadlines and may share their own learning materials with others. The platform acts as their co-teacher by immediately generating automated feedback on each submitted solution and monitoring progress of the students individually and as a group. Teachers may also review code submitted by their students to suggest remedies for code smells.

We embarked the #EUvsVirus hackathon with two clear challenges:

  1. technical challenge: extend Dodona with reading activities that support a broad range of embedded multimedia and track the progress of individual students
  2. educational challenge: convert the book “The Coder’s Apprentice” by Pieter Spronck (Tilburg University) into an interactive learning path to learn to code in Python 3 for homeschooling in secondary schools during the corona crisis

Dodona 3.6 was released on Monday April 27, 2020. It comes with reading activities that have been applied in the new course “The Coder’s Apprentice” for learning to code in secondary education:

  • available in English and Dutch
  • open source on GitHub under Creative Commons BY-NC license
  • 184 reading activities with embedded illustrations from the book by Pieter Spronck
  • 110 Python 3 programming exercises with support for automated feedback
  • free for remixing to shape your own courses that suit the needs of your classes

Running up to the exams at the end of this term, team Dodona (Ghent University, Belgium) will extend the smart code reviews in Dodona with release conditions for code reviews, easier reuse of previous annotations, automatic hinting of code smells, grading and support for peer reviews. So follow @DodonaEdu on Twitter and stay tuned for Dodona 3.7 coming soon.

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