Defining a New 21st Century Skill-Computational Thinking: Concepts and Trends

  •  Halil Haseski    
  •  Ulas Ilic    
  •  Ufuk Tugtekin    


Computational Thinking is a skill that guides the 21th century individual in the problems experienced during daily life and it has an ever-increasing significance. Multifarious definitions were attempted to explain the concept of Computational Thinking. However, it was determined that there was no consensus on this matter in the literature and several different concepts were mentioned in the definitions found in the literature. It was considered that this fact made it difficult to understand the concept of Computational Thinking. To establish a more comprehensive approach, the present study aimed to identify the concepts that are included in the Computational Thinking definitions that were presented in previous studies. It also aimed to reveal trends in the identified concepts throughout the years. As a result of the search, a total of 59 definitions were identified and a content analysis was conducted on these definitions. Analysis results demonstrated that Computational Thinking was defined based on several concepts such as problem solving, technology, thinking, individual and social qualities. Furthermore, it was determined that statements on thinking were prominent before 2006, and today, emphasis on problem solving and technology became more significant. It was considered that the present study would contribute to a better understanding of the Computational Thinking concept. At the end of the study, certain suggestions were presented for further research.

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