Course Level
Knowledge Unit
Fundamental Programming Concepts
Collection Item Type

This POGIL activity is intended as an in-class activity for a CS 1 course (Java), potentially replacing a lecture, lab, or recitation section. The activity introduces students to the Java operators % and /, and the difference between integer and floating-point division. It also introduces students to the POGIL roles and requires students to reflect on their collaboration.  This activity may be given on the first day of class in CS 1 (no Java experience necessary).

Model 1 was authored by Mark Morehouse; Models 2, 3 and 4 was authored by Helen Hu.


Students should be assigned in groups of 3-4 students (ideally four students). The instructor should provide POGIL role cards

While this written activity only takes 60 minutes, it's important to allow time (an additional 20-30 minutes) for student groups to report out their answers and to facilitate discussion. The activity may be broken into two separate activities (Models 1-2 in one class period, Models 3-4 in a second class period) if necessary. 

Learning objectives for POGIL activities are divided into content learning objectives (CS concepts) and process learning objectives. After completing this activity, learners should be able to:

Content Learning Objectives:

•   Evaluate a Java expression that uses the % operator with integers.

•   Evaluate a Java expression that uses the / operator with integers.

•   Explain the difference between integer and floating-point division.

Process Learning Objectives:

•   Explain the responsibilities of the POGIL roles.

•   Provide feedback on how well group members are fulfilling their responsibilities.

For more assignments by this author using POGIL, please see see the following link: CS1 POGIL Activities

Engagement Highlights

POGIL (Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning) is a research-based instructional strategy shown to increase pass rates and student retention of course content. Students are assigned roles (see role cards) that provide guidance on working together effectively. Instead of lecturing, instructors work as facilitators of learning, which encourages equity in the classroom. POGIL activities are completed during class (not as homework). They can replace a lecture, lab, or recitation class.

POGIL activities are designed to guide students through a Learning Cycle of Exploration, Concept Invention and Application. Students will explore information directly presented in the model, use this information to develop a new idea or better understanding of a concept, and finally apply this information in a new context.  

Engagement Practices Employed

Materials and Links

Computer Science Details

Computer Science Topic(s)
group work
integer division
Java integer operators
Programming Language

Additional Details

Prerequisites / Prep Materials

No Java or POGIL experience necessary. This activity may be given on the first day of class in CS 1.

Estimated Time to Complete

90 minutes

Material Format and Licensing Information

Material Format
Technology Platform Required
Not Specified/Unknown
Creative Commons License

Author's Institutional Information

Institution Type
Master's Colleges and Universities I
Community Type
City Midsize