This article is published in the August 2013 issue.

Among women, U.S. citizens indicated that dependable employment was less important in their decision to pursue a PhD in computing than non-citizens


CERP_Infographic-August-2013First year graduate students enrolled in a Ph.D. program in computing (N = 129) were asked How important was each of the following factors in your decision to pursue your current graduate degree in computing? Salary potential; Dependable employment; Career opportunities/advancement outside of academia. Responses ranged from (1) Not at all to (5) Extremely. These three items were aggregated to make a dependable employment index (Cronbach’s alpha = .81). Among women, U.S. citizens indicated that dependable employment was less important in their decision to pursue a Ph.D. in computing than non-citizens, p ≤ .05; men showed no such difference. This finding highlights the importance of taking cultural beliefs and ideals into consideration when exploring reasons for gender disparities in computing fields.

Note: U.S. citizens = Native born + Naturalized + Permanent resident. Non-citizens = non-U.S. citizen with a temporary visa. Women U.S. citizens, n =31. Men U.S. citizens, n = 31. Women non-citizens, n = 15. Men non-citizens, n = 52.

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