This study aims to explore the usability of the virtual robotics programming curriculum (VRP-C) for robotics programming teaching. Pre-service computer science (CS) teachers were trained for robotics programming teaching by using VRP-C in a scientific education activity. After training, views of the participants were revealed by using a scale and an evaluation form consisting of open-ended questions. Results show that VRP-C is compatible with the curriculum for robotics programming teaching in schools, and pre-service CS teachers tend to use VRP-C in their courses. They think that VRP-C will be beneficial for robotics programming teaching in terms of content, functionality, and cost. Compatibility, visual design, feedback, time management, fiction, gamification, and cost are the characteristics that increase the usability of VRP-C. VRP-C can be used as an online tool for robotics programming training due to the necessity of transition to distance education because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Automated assessment technologies have been used in education for decades (e.g., computerised multiple choice tests). In contrast, Automated Essay Grading (AEG) technologies: have existed for decades; are `good in theory' (e.g., as accurate as humans, temporally and financially efficient, and can enhance formative feedback), and yet; are ostensibly used comparatively infrequently in Australian universities. To empirically examine these experiential observations we conducted a national survey to explore the use of automated assessment in Australian universities and examine why adoption of AEG is limited. Quantitative and qualitative data were collected in an online survey from a sample of 265 staff and students from 5 Australian universities. The type of assessment used by the greatest proportion of respondents was essays/reports (82.6%), however very few respondents had used AEG (3.8%). Recommendations are made regarding methods to promote technology utilisation, including the use of innovative dissemination channels such as 3D Virtual Worlds.