Levels of problem-solving competency identified through Bebras Computing Challenge

Kyungbin Kwon, Jongpil Cheon, Hyunchang Moon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


As computational thinking (CT) gains more attention in K-16 education, problem-solving has been more emphasized as a core competency that can be found across various domains. To develop an evaluation framework that reveals students’ problem-solving competency, this study examined solutions for the Bebras Computing Challenge which requires students to utilize problem-solving skills in a CT domain. A total of 246 solutions of three Bebras tasks were analyzed based on a qualitative content analysis method and four levels of solutions were identified. The solution levels revealed how students (1) failed to understand a problem (No solution), (2) solved the problem but failed to identify the pattern (Premature level), (3) identified principles embedded in the problem but failed to apply them to devise an automized solution (Intermediate level), and (4) identified principles and solved the problem by applying them (Advanced level). This study presented solution levels across Bebras tasks and discussed how task difficulty affected student solutions differently. Implications for teaching problem-solving skills were discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5477-5498
Number of pages22
JournalEducation and Information Technologies
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2021


  • Bebras Computing Challenge
  • CT assessment
  • Computational thinking
  • Problem-solving


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