Biography:Alexander Repenning

From HandWiki
Short description: American computer programmer
Alexander Repenning
Alexander Repenning.jpg
Baden, Switzerland
CitizenshipUnited States ,
Alma materUniversity of Colorado at Boulder
Known forAgentSheets, AgentCubes
Scientific career
FieldsComputer Science, Cognitive Science
InstitutionsUniversity of Colorado at Boulder

Alexander Repenning is the Director of the Scalable Game Design project,[1] a computer science professor adjunct,[2] a founder of AgentSheets Inc., and a member of the Center for Lifelong Learning and Design [3] at the University of Colorado in Boulder. Repenning is the inventor of drag and drop blocks programming. His research interests include computer science education, end-user programmable agents, human-computer interaction, and artificial intelligence.


Repenning is the creator of the AgentSheets and AgentCubes[4] Cyberlearning tools used for game design and computational science applications. As the Director of the Scalable Game Design project, using AgentSheets, he leads an effort to reinvent computer science education in public schools through game design starting at the middle school level. With over 10,000 students, and with funding from the National Science Foundation (ITEST and CE21 programs) and Google, the Scalable Game Design project is conducting the largest US study [5] of computer science education at the middle school level including inner city schools, remote rural areas, and Native American communities. Results indicate that students, across genders and ethnicities, are not only highly motivated to learn computer science through game design but they also learn essential computational thinking skills.[6] They acquire skills through game design, which later they can leverage in STEM simulation creation. Repenning's theoretical contributions include a pedagogical framework called the Zones of Proximal Flow [7] combining Vygotsky’s Zone of Proximal Development with Csikszentmihalyi’s state of Flow.


  1. Scalable Game Design project
  2. "Alexander Repenning". University of Colorado Boulder. 
  3. Center for Lifelong Learning and Design
  4. Repenning, A., Smith, C., Owen B., Repenning, N., Agentcubes: Enabling 3D Creativity by Addressing Cognitive and Affective Programming Challenges, World Conference on Educational Media and Technology, EdMedia 2012, June 26–29, 20122, Denver, Colorado, USA.
  5. Scalable Game Design Study summary
  6. Webb, D., Repenning, A. and Koh, K. Toward an Emergent Theory of Broadening Participation in Computer Science Education. In Proceedings of the ACM Special Interest Group on Computer Science Education Conference, (SIGCSE 2012) (Raleigh, North Carolina, USA., February 29 - March 3, 2012). ACM, 173-178.
  7. Basawapatna, A., Repenning, A., Koh, K. H., and Nickerson, H., The Zones of Proximal Flow: Guiding Students Through A Space Of Computational Thinking Skills and Challenges. In Proceedings of the International Computing Education Research (ICER 2013) (San Diego, CA, USA., August 12–14, 2013). ACM Press.