Irene  Chen

Irene Chen

Scholar Title

MIT EECS - Quanta Computer Undergraduate Research and Innovation Scholar

Research Title

Holistic Program Visualizations for Introductory CS Education




Frederic P. Durand


Traditional program visualizations show execution state only at specific points in time, which is ineffective at demonstrating more dynamic concepts such as recursion, function returns, and variable scope. We want to come up with better ways to visualize the overall flow of execution, so that new computer science students can identify patterns in how the state of their programs change. In particular, we aim to enhance Online Python Tutor (, a popular web-based program visualization tool, with new program flow visualizations. The overall goal of this SuperUROP project is to help novices gain a holistic understanding of the programs they write in introductory programming courses.


During the last two summers, I implemented a new social plugin for Facebook (2013) and developed a new market view tool for IMC Financial Markets (2012). In the last school year, I worked with the MIT Humans and Automation Lab creating an iPad prototype of an in-cab locomotive heads-up display. I was also a lab assistant for the edX course 6.00x (Introduction to Computer Science and Programming).

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