GIPPY: Game for Introductory Programming Practice in Python

Aitor Lapeña, Beatriz Marin, Tanja Vos

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Article in proceedingAcademicpeer-review


People and society are getting more and more dependent on software since it increasingly determines our daily life activities, either in social or business contexts. With the increasing use of software, comes an increasing need for programmers that develop that software. Learning how to program is a complex process that goes beyond the learning of the syntax of a programming language. Students need to learn how to solve problems with computational thinking. Practicing logical reasoning and problem-solving are at the centre of the activities performed by programmers. Thus, the best way to learn computational thinking is by practicing a lot, and one of the most fun ways to do that is by using games.

Gamification has demonstrated to be an effective technique to motivate and enact students with learning. For that reason, gamification has been used in all kinds of areas, including teaching of programming. In this work we present a simple browser game, called GIPPPY, to help students that are starting to learn programming in the practice of computational thinking skills. To do that, the game has 12 levels that go from easy to more complex programming concepts. Taking into account the massive use of Python as a programming language in the last years, we have selected the Python language to design the challenges of the game. Therefore, GIPPPY presents the programming concepts using Python notation.

To check the impact of this game, we have evaluated GIPPPY with engineering students of the Universitat Politécnica de Valencia during the second semester of 2021. Results show that students had fun when learning, and that students consider the game as a good complement to the currently used techniques to start practicing computational thinking and learning Python.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationINTED2022
Subtitle of host publication16th International Technology, Education and Development Conference Proceedings
Editors Luis Gómez Chova, Agustín López Martínez, Ignacio Candel Torres
Place of PublicationValencia, Spain
ISBN (Print)978-84-09-37758-9
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2022
Event16th International Technology, Education and Development Conference - Valencia, Spain
Duration: 7 Mar 20228 Mar 2022
Conference number: 16

Publication series

SeriesINTED Proceedings


Conference16th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Abbreviated titleINTED 2022


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