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Alex LashkovApril 1, 20244 min read

Unlocking Student Potential with AI: Introducing Codio Coach

Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are rapidly transforming our world, and computing education needs to keep pace. To bridge this gap, Codio is taking a revolutionary step forward with the launch of Codio Coach. This AI-driven learning assistant is designed to empower students and foster an environment of independent learning and critical thinking. 

Codio Coach is a conversational AI companion that nudges learners toward effective problem-solving while upholding the highest standards of academic integrity. Here is what help Codio Coach can provide.

Why Do We Need AI in Computing Education?

Because it's here, and it's not going away! At a recent panel discussion of computing educators hosted by Codio at SIGCSE 2024, Professor Armando Fox of UC Berkeley compared resisting GenAI in computing education to "resisting gravity."

According to research conducted by Codio, a significant majority (76%) of students have used GenAI tools like ChatGPT and Google Bard, with 47% of students using GenAI tools for school-related tasks.

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In computing courses, over 43% of students utilized GenAI tools for assignment comprehension, 41% for error explanation, and nearly 39% for algorithm writing. 

AI research

But how can we use AI to help students better understand assignments and unstack faster while maintaining academic integrity and promoting critical thinking? Codio Coach offers several features that solve this task.

Hint Bot For Faster Progress

Codio Coach redefines the learning landscape by providing AI-assisted just-in-time support tailored to each student’s needs. This innovative tool is adept at overcoming learning barriers, offering personalized guidance that accelerates students' journey through coursework. By providing targeted assistance and explanations, Codio Coach ensures that students build solid problem-solving capabilities without over-relying on instructors.


Central to Codio's mission is the commitment to maintaining academic integrity. Codio Coach is designed to support and encourage learning without giving direct answers. Our Hint Bot helps students understand the next steps in their assignments and directs them to important areas to focus on. No direct answers are given by the AI. 

This balanced approach nurtures ethical learning practices and contributes to higher course completion rates among students.

Simplifying Assignment Understanding

Codio Coach transforms the daunting task of decoding complex assignments into a streamlined process. It offers the capability to summarize tasks that may be hard to understand into clear, manageable steps. This approach demystifies complex problems, making the learning journey more accessible and engaging.


Demystifying Programming Errors

During our research, 92% of computing students claimed that they perceive error messages as barriers to progress. With Codio Coach, the often frustrating experience of deciphering cryptic programming error messages becomes a constructive learning opportunity. The platform's advanced AI interprets these errors, providing clear, actionable feedback in a more human-readable form. 

This feature empowers students to grasp the nature of their mistakes and learn effective debugging strategies, turning potential setbacks into moments of learning and growth.


Empowering Educators with Customizable AI Tools

Recognizing the pivotal role of educators in shaping learning experiences, Codio Coach offers extensive customization options. Educators can tailor the level of AI assistance according to their teaching strategies and students' learning needs.

Whether it's turning off AI features or selecting specific hints to display, this flexibility ensures that students can engage with challenges that are appropriate for their level of expertise. This approach guarantees the development of robust debugging skills, supported by just the right amount of AI assistance.

Codio Coach FAQ:

What are the different Codio Coach assistants, and what do they do?

  • Summarization Assistant: Provides students with a simple summary of the programming assignment's tasks and a list of requirements.
  • Explain Error Assistant: Offers plain English explanations for compiler error messages, pinpointing the cause of the error.
  • Hint Bot: Provides context-specific hints to help students move forward with the assignment, phrased as questions or suggestions rather than solutions.

How do students access Codio Coach?
Instructors must enable Coach for specific assignments. Students will see a "Coach" button within the assignment where they can interact with the different assistants. There is no way for students to enter their own prompts to avoid any possibility of compromising academic integrity.

How does the Explain Error Assistant work for errors displayed in the terminal?
If the error message isn't automatically detected by Coach (because it's not in the assignment's guide), students can copy and paste the error message from the terminal into the Coach chat window. The assistant will then analyze the pasted message and provide an explanation.

Can instructors customize Codio Coach?
Yes! A future update will allow instructors to create custom assistants with their own prompts and functionalities. Instructors can also adjust the existing assistants' prompts and set thresholds for how often students can use them.

Are there any costs associated with using Codio Coach?
As of 2024-2025, Codio Coach will be included with no additional charges.

Is Codio Coach reliable?
The developers are extensively testing Codio Coach to ensure it provides accurate information.  Instructors can also set guidelines and restrictions to make the assistant more reliable for their specific course content.

In what languages does Codio Coach work?
Currently, Codio Coach works with any programming language supported on the Codio platform (which is pretty much everything). Our developers are prioritizing Java, C++, and Python for in-depth testing and will be expanding to other languages in the future.

Elevating Learning Outcomes with Codio

Codio is dedicated to enhancing and optimizing the educational experience. Schedule a personalized demonstration today to discover how Codio Coach can transform your curriculum. Embrace the future of learning with Codio, where AI-powered support and educational excellence converge.



Alex Lashkov

Alex is Product Marketing Lead at Codio.