Nowadays, the technology evolves rapidly and with it increases the need for qualified professionals in the field of ICT. Employment of IT professionals is projected to grow worldwide by 22% till 2022, much faster than the average for all occupations. The main reason for this rapid growth is a large increase in the market demand for computer software and mobile applications. In regard, nonprofit organizations and established businesses are looking for alternative ways to educate and grow the number of people, in particular students, involved in learning computer programming.
On the other hand, most of the students regardless of their age have access to the Internet via laptops, tablets, smartphones which turns them into intuitive and everyday learners and gives them access to unlimited resources, content and information in the form of web-based platforms, mobile e-learning applications, social media, online games and others providing abundant and diverse learning experience.
However, no matter how fast technology evolves and how many alternative teaching techniques are introduced constantly, the major challenge of the education still remains motivation. In this context, students are more driven to learn by playing online games, interacting via social media and expressing themselves via digital resources rather than struggling with the traditional educational methods.
A relatively new, but gaining popularity, form of education is the use of interactive online e-learning platforms that merge the possibility of learning computer programming skills while building digital games. Most of the platforms are designed using gamification approach and provide vast and entertaining methods, based on rich user experience, interaction and simulation.
The purpose of this paper is to present these innovative e-learning platforms for learning computer programming, to explore their features, advantages and drawbacks as well as to investigate the impact of the interactive learning experience they create.
e-learning platforms, teaching computer programming, game development, serious games, gamification