Published: June 2016, Issue: Vol. 28/No.6, Download as PDF

WOCinTech ChatWOCinTech Chat

How to Recruit More Diverse Students: Challenges and Opportunities


In an era when the media talks about higher education in unique ways—such as focusing on the need for universities to display high post-graduation job placement rates and higher starting salaries to justify increasing tuition, and the need for college students to be well trained for the available opportunities in our national labor force—computing is perfectly positioned for recruiting prospective students. Indeed, for some groups and universities, growth in the area of computing has been strong and continues to grow (Zweben & Bizot, 2015). One fact sometimes cited by programs looking to encourage prospective students to matriculate in their major is to say that workers in STEM disciplines command higher wages, earning 26% more than their non-STEM peers. Another message focuses on the fact that workers with STEM degrees earn more even when they do not work in a STEM occupation (Langdon, McKittrick, Beede, Khan, & Doms, 2010). Despite the fact that these messages are well received by some individuals, for others, these messages are not sufficient to recruit them into a computing program.

Asian Versus White Student SUpportAsian Versus White Student SUpport

A Comparison of East Asian, South Asian, Southeast Asian, and White Undergraduate Student Familial Support


Education research focusing on diversity in computing in the United States often considers Asian/Asian American students and White students to be “advantaged” demographic groups. However, Data Buddies survey data collected during the fall of 2015 indicate Asian/Asian American versus White students’ experiences pursuing computing degrees may differ. For instance, CERP examined undergraduate students’ family support for pursuing a computing degree. Whereas South Asian students’ level of family support was statistically equivalent to that of White students, East Asian and Southeast Asian students’ family support was significantly lower than that of their White peers, p ≤ .05. These findings suggest Asian/Asian American and White students may overlap in some experiences in computing, but this overlap may depend on students’ cultural identities within their Asian/Asian American identities.

Computer Aided Personalized Education Report PhotoComputer Aided Personalized Education Report Photo

Computer-Aided Personalized Education Report


The organizing committee for the Computing Community Consortium (CCC) sponsored Computer-Aided Personalized Education has released its workshop report. The workshop, held in November 2015, brought together over 50 researchers in the fields of education, computer science, human-computer interaction, and cognitive psychology to address the challenges and future directions of computing-based educational tools. This growing agenda in computing research includes formalizing tasks such as assessment and feedback as computational problems, developing algorithmic tools to solve resulting problems at scale, and incorporating these tools effectively in learning environments.

Stay tuned to the CCC Blog for reflections from the CCC Symposium on Computing Research: Addressing National Priorities and Societal Needs!

CNSF-ExhibitionCNSF-Exhibition

NSF Funded Vision Assistance Technology Amazes at the 2016 CNSF Exhibition


On April 26th, the Coalition for National Science Funding (CNSF), an alliance of over 140 professional organizations, universities, and businesses, held their 22nd Annual Capitol Hill Exhibition. CNSF supports the goal of increasing the federal investment in the National Science Foundation’s research and education programs, and the exhibition itself is a great way to show members of Congress and their staff what research the American people have funded.

Ideas LabIdeas Lab

Innovation Lab Maps the Future of Learning in Smart and Connected Communities


As more than 30 leading researchers and innovators queued to enter the lab space for an intensive week of work, the excitement and uncertainty were apparent. Two questions were on the participants’ minds: What is a “smart and connected learning community”? And what will we be doing for an entire week together?

Technology is now enabling youth to engage in learning opportunities through their communities. In Seattle, young people are mapping the learning resources within their communities. In Chicago and several other cities, a social learning platform called iRemix connects youth with extended learning and mentorship opportunities. In New York, a major science museum is re-imagining itself as serving the needs of low-income youth by engaging with churches, community spaces, and neighborhood activists in coordinated city-scale literacy and STEM learning events.

Satoe Sakuma, 2016 Eben Tisdale FellowSatoe Sakuma, 2016 Eben Tisdale Fellow

CRA Welcomes Satoe Sakuma as its 2016 Eben Tisdale Fellow


I am currently a rising senior at Boston University, double majoring in computer science and international relations with a focus in East Asian economics. I am very interested in high tech public policy, especially areas of cybersecurity, because it allows me to utilize both my areas of studies. My two very different majors are finally coming together during my last year as an undergraduate student through my acceptance into the senior honors program, which requires a year-long research project culminating with a thesis and defense. My thesis will examine data privacy laws in East Asia.

Hanna-and-MarthaHanna-and-Martha

2016 BECA Winners – Martha Kim and Hanna Wallach


CRA-Women (CRA-W) announced that Martha Kim and Hanna Wallach are the recipients of this year’s 2016 Borg Early Career Award (BECA). The award honors the late Anita Borg, who was an early member of CRA-W and an inspiration for her commitment in increasing the participation of women in computing research. The annual award is given to a woman in computer science and/or engineering who has made significant research contributions and who has contributed to her profession, especially in the outreach to women.

Mario NascimentoMario Nascimento

New CRA Board Member: Mario A. Nascimento


Mario A. Nascimento is a full professor at the University of Alberta’s Department of Computing Science and since July 2014 serves as chair of the Department. Before joining the University of Alberta in 1999, he was a researcher with the Brazilian Agency for Agricultural Research and also an adjunct faculty member with the Institute of Computing of the University of Campinas. Mario has also been a visiting professor at the National University of Singapore’s School of Computing (Fall 2005), Aalborg University’s Department of Computer Science (Winter 2006), LMU Munich (Fall 2013-Winter 2014) and at the Federal University of Ceara in Brazil (2013 and 2014). In 2007 he was recognized as a Senior Member of the ACM.

Mynatt and SpaffordMynatt and Spafford

ACM General Election Results


ACM has recently announced its newly elected officers. Vicki L. Hanson, Rochester Institute of Technology and University of Dundee, was elected president. Cherri M. Pancake, Oregon State University, was elected vice president, and Elizabeth Churchill, Google, was elected secretary/treasurer. CCC Vice Chair Elizabeth Mynatt, Georgia Tech, and former CRA Board Member Eugene H. Spafford, Purdue University, were among five individuals elected to be members at large, serving from July 1, 2016 to June 30, 2020.

ACM logoACM logo

Join ACM and Shape the Future of Computing!


Join ACM and Shape the Future of Computing! For over 50 years, ACM has helped computing professionals to be their most creative, connect to peers, and see what’s next. Joining ACM means you dare to be the best computing professional you can be. Join ACM today and save 25% at http://www.acm.org/KeepInventing/CRA. ACM-W supports, celebrates, and advocates internationally for the full engagement of women in all aspects of the computing field.