Interface-based Programming Assignments and Automatic Grading of Java Programs
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AutoGrader is a framework developed at Miami University for the automatic grading of student programming assignments written in the Java programming language. AutoGrader leverages the abstract concept of interfaces, brought out by the Java interface language construct, in both the assignment and grading of programming assignments. The use of interfaces reinforces the role of procedural abstraction in ob ject-oriented programming and allows for a common API to all student code. This common API then enables automatic grading of program functionality. AutoGrader provides a simple instructor API and enables the automatic testing of student code through the Java language features of interfaces and reﬂection1 . AutoGrader also supports static code analysis using PMD  to detect possible bugs, dead code, suboptimal, and overcomplicated code. While AutoGrader is written in and only handles Java programs, this style of automated grading is adaptable to any language that supports (or can mimic) named interfaces and/or abstract functions and that also supports runtime reﬂection.