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The 4th International Workshop on Trends in Functional Programming in Education, TFPIE 2015, will be held on June 2, 2015 in Sophia-Antipolis in France. It is co-located with the Symposium on Trends in Functional Programming (TFP 2015) which takes place from June 3 - 5.



The goal of TFPIE is to gather researchers, teachers and professionals that use, or are interested in the use of, functional programming in education. TFPIE aims to be a venue where novel ideas, classroom-tested ideas and work-in-progress on the use of functional programming in education are discussed. The one-day workshop will foster a spirit of open discussion by having a review process for publication after the workshop. The program chair of TFPIE 2015 will screen submissions to ensure that all presentations are within scope and are of interest to participants. Potential presenters are invited to submit an extended abstract (4-6 pages) or a draft paper (up to 16 pages) in EPTCS style. The authors of accepted presentations will have their preprints and their slides made available on the workshop's website/wiki. Visitors to the TFPIE 2015 website/wiki will be able to add comments. This includes presenters who may respond to comments and questions as well as provide pointers to improvements and follow-up work. After the workshop, presenters will be invited to submit (a revised version of) their article for review. The PC will select the best articles for publication in the journal Electronic Proceedings in Theoretical Computer Science (EPTCS). Articles rejected for presentation and extended abstracts will not be formally reviewed by the PC.

TFPIE workshops have previously been held in St Andrews, Scotland (2012), Provo Utah, USA (2013), and Soesterberg, The Netherlands (2014).


Preliminary program. We might still partly change the program.

 9:00 - 10:00 Invited talk: Christian Queinnec - Teaching recursion: a repeated MOOC experiment. 

Abstract: I have been running a MOOC on recursive programming in Spring 2014 and 2015. One prominent feature was that students were required to program and have their programs automatically graded. In this talk, I will present the goals and the challenges, the successes and the failures I encountered and some new ideas I am eager to experiment in a new edition.

 10:00 - 10:30 Coffee/tea 
 10:30 - 11:10 Baltasar Trancón Y Widemann  
              Beta Hero: Reduction Semantics Dressing Up for the YouTube Age
 11:10 - 11:50 Chihiro Uehara and Kenichi Asai 
              Cross validation of the universe teachpack of Racket in OCaml (link)
 11:50 - 12:30 Cezar Ionescu and Patrik Jansson
              Domain-Specific Languages of Mathematics: Presenting Mathematical Analysis using FP
 12:30 - 14:00 Lunch
 14:00 - 14:40 Fernando Alegre and Juana Moreno
              Haskell in Middle and High School Mathematics
 14:40 - 15:30 Workshop/discussion
 15:30 - 16:00 Coffee/tea
 16:00 - 16:40 Francisco Saiz 
              Teaching Experiences in a Functional-first Multi-paradigm Programming Course (link)
 16:40 - 17:30 Jaap Boender, Ed Currie, Martin Loomes, Franco Raimondi and Giuseppe Primiero 
              Teaching Functional Patterns through Robotic Applications (link)

Submission Guidelines

TFPIE 2015 welcomes submissions describing techniques used in the classroom, tools used in and/or developed for the classroom and any creative use of functional programming (FP) to aid education in or outside Computer Science. Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  FP and beginning CS students
  FP and Computational Thinking
  FP and Artificial Intelligence
  FP in Robotics
  FP and Music 
  Advanced FP for undergraduates
  FP in graduate education
  Engaging students in research using FP
  FP in Programming Languages
  FP in the high school curriculum
  FP as a stepping stone to other CS topics
  FP and Philosophy
  Best Lectures

In addition to papers, this year we are requesting “best lecture” presentations. What’s your best lecture topic in an FP related course? Do you have a fun way to present FP concepts to novices or perhaps an especially interesting presentation of a difficult topic? In either case, please consider sharing it. Best lecture topics will be selected for presentation based on a short abstract describing the lecture and its interest to TFPIE attendees.

Papers and abstracts can be submitted via easychair at the following link:

It is expected at at least one author for each submitted paper will attend the workshop.

Important Dates

April 27, 2015: Submission deadline for draft TFPIE papers and abstracts

May 3 2015: Notification of acceptance for presentation

May 4, 2015: Registration for TFP closes

June 2, 2015: Presentations in Sophia-Antipolis, France

July 7, 2015: Full papers for EPTCS proceedings due.

September 1, 2015: Notification of acceptance for proceedings

September 22, 2015: Camera ready copy due for EPTCS

Submission of an abstract implies no obligation to submit a full version; abstracts with no corresponding full versions by the full paper deadline will be considered as withdrawn.

Program Committee

Johan Jeuring, Utrecht University and Open University, The Netherlands (Chair)

Peter Achten, Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands

Marco Morazan, Seton Hall University, US

Rita Loogen, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Germany

Norman Ramsey, Tufts University, US

Shriram Krishnamurthi, Brown University, US

Edwin Brady, University of St Andrews, UK


At the workshop/discussion we discussed the possibilities of setting up a common experiment. This idea is taken from the ITICSE series of symposia, see for example the 2015 instance, where groups of international researchers/educators get together to set up common experiments, to achieve results that are hard to obtain by a single researcher/educator in a single country. Kathi Fisler performed an experiment with the so-called rainfall problem using Racket at 4 schools in the US. The rainfall problem was first used by Elliot Soloway to assess students’ progress in learning to construct programs, and to find out how well they decompose and compose programming plans. Fisler uses the following variant of the rainfall problem:

  Design a program called rainfall that consumes a list of numbers 
  representing daily rainfall amounts as entered by a user. 
  The list may contain the number -999 indicating the end of the 
  data of interest. 
  Produce the average of the non-negative values in the list up to 
  the first -999 (if it shows up). 
  There may be negative numbers other than -999 in the list.

The idea we discussed was to repeat the experiment, but now using a typed functional programming language. Questions we might ask are: do the concept of types, or easily available higher-order constructs such as composition, change the way in which students solve the rainfall problem? Fisler had to adapt the rubric for coding solutions to the rainfall problem: do we need to further adapt this rubric, or are solutions similar? Do we find the same kind of errors and programming plans in the solutions of students, or do other plans show up, or do some plans never show up? The hypothesis is that using a typed, higher-order functional programming language, in which notation doesn't deviate too much from the notation students are used to from mathematics courses, supports developing programs with fewer errors, following desirable plans. Thus we can contribute to Guzdial's call to make measurable progress (or not).