Computing with a Community Focus: Outcomes from an App Inventor Summer Camp for Middle School Students


This paper describes the design and evaluation of a one-week App Inventor summer camp for middle school students with an explicit focus on addressing local community needs. The community focus of the camp was designed to appeal to a broad range of students. We conducted an in-depth interview study to examine its impact on students' attitudes and perceptions, and supplemented this with results from project evaluation. Our results indicate that students had positive experiences in learning and creating real apps for solving community problems. Focusing on local community needs can also help to motivate students' interest in creating apps and in learning more about computer science. Students became more confident in creating apps as well as in using apps to solve community problems, and the camp was successful in welcoming a diverse set of students into computing.



Author and publisher information is provided below. Note that many publishers charge a fee or membership for full access. Permission/access must be requested through the publisher or author directly.


Lijun Ni
Diane Schilder
Mark Sherman
Fred Martin
Consortium for Computer Sciences in Colleges
STEM Career Opportunities and Workforce Development
Teacher Professional Development and Pedagogy
Youth Motivation and Interests in STEM
File Attachment(s)
Publication Year
Additional Disciplines
Computer Science - general
Computer Science - computer hardware
Computer Science - gaming and simulations
Computer Science - general skills and mathematics
Computer Science - multimedia - audio, video and animation
Computer Science - programming