CRA Bulletin

The CRA Bulletin frequently shares news, timely information about CRA initiatives, and items of interest to the general community.
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Posts categorized under: Education

Information on educational initiatives.


CRA EducationCRA Education

CRA-E Workshop at FCRC – Academic Careers: The Landscape is Broader than You Think


The CRA Education Committee, with support from Google, is organizing an Academic Careers Workshop at FCRC 2019. The workshop will be held on Tuesday, June 25 from 12:30-6:30 PM. Please register for the workshop through the FCRC registration page. We are now accepting applications for financial support to attend the workshop! Click here for more information and a tentative agenda.

Joss PenaJoss Pena

CRA Education Committee Selects New Graduate Fellow


CRA’s Education Committee (CRA-E) has recently selected its 2019 CRA-E Graduate Fellow – Joslenne (Joss) Peña. Joss is a Ph.D. candidate and Sloan MPHD Scholar in Informatics at Penn State University (PSU) under the direction of Mary Beth Rosson. She earned her M.S. in Information Sciences and Technology in 2015 (also at PSU). Joss completed a 14-month internship as a research intern in the Human-Centered Systems group at Honeywell Aerospace. Broadly, her research interests are in human-computer interaction, design, computer science education, and human factors psychology. Specifically, her dissertation work is investigating non-programmers’ behaviors and attitudes in higher education through small exposures to coding and how their trajectories relate to a reexamined view of computational thinking.

Ran Libeskind-HadasRan Libeskind-Hadas

Board Member Highlight: CRA Board Member Ran Libeskind-Hadas


My research explores algorithmic methods for determining whether a pair of species are likely to have coevolved and, if so, finding the “best” scenarios that explain their evolutionary histories. This work explores the computational complexity of these reconciliation problems, seeks to develop efficient reconciliation algorithms where possible, and, ultimately, to implement these algorithms in practical tools for biologists and educators.

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Jennifer Rexford and Westley Weimer Receive the 2019 CRA-E Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentoring Award


The Education Committee of the Computing Research Association (CRA-E) is proud to announce two recipients of the 2019 CRA-E Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentoring Award: Jennifer Rexford from Princeton University and Westley Weimer from the University of Michigan. These outstanding individuals are being recognized for providing exceptional mentorship, undergraduate research experiences, and, in parallel, guidance on admission and matriculation of their students to research-focused graduate programs in computing.

Award winners 2019Award winners 2019

2019 Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher Award Winners


Congratulations to the recipients of the 2019 Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher Award. This year’s nominees are a very impressive group. A number of them were commended for making significant contributions to more than one research project, several are authors or coauthors on multiple papers, others have made presentations at major conferences, and some have produced software artifacts that were in widespread use.

Photo of CRA-E FellowsPhoto of CRA-E Fellows

CRA-E Graduate Fellows Program Accepting Nominations


The Computing Research Association Education Committee (CRA-E) is now accepting applications for the CRA-E Graduate Fellows Program. The program opportunities for Ph.D. candidates in a computing field to contribute to CRA-E projects, to network with computer science education advocates on the committee, and to engage in advocacy for mentoring undergraduate students and promote computer science research and undergraduate education at the national level.

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Nominations Open for 2019 CRA-E Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentoring Award


The CRA-E Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentoring Award honors faculty members in computing who have made a significant impact on students they have mentored. It recognizes those who have provided exceptional mentorship and undergraduate research experiences and, in parallel, guidance on admission and matriculation of these students to research-focused graduate programs in computing.

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Nominations Open for 2019 CRA Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Researchers


The Computing Research Association is pleased to announce the annual CRA Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Researchers, which recognizes undergraduate students in North American colleges and universities who show outstanding research potential in an area of computing research. The award is a wonderful way to recognize your best student researchers and your department.

New Computing Faculty Workshops in Summer 2018


The fourth (and last NSF-funded) New Computing Faculty Workshops will be held August 5-10, 2018 in San Diego. The goal of the workshops is to help new computing faculty to be better and more efficient teachers. By learning a little about teaching, we will help new faculty (a) make their teaching more efficient and effective and (b) make their teaching more enjoyable. We want students to learn more and teachers to have fun teaching them.

Robert BowdenRobert Bowden

CRA-E Selects 2018 Graduate Fellow


CRA’s Education Committee (CRA-E) has recently selected its 2018 CRA-E Graduate Fellow – Robert (“Rob”) Bowden.  Rob is a Ph.D. student in computer science at Harvard University. After earning his undergraduate degree at Harvard in 2013, he spent a year working as the course preceptor for Harvard’s CS50 course, and then returned to graduate school with Margo Seltzer as his adviser. Rob’s Ph.D. research includes work on file systems and code synthesis. His current work focuses on how to use the vast amount of CS50 solutions generated by students to not only detect errors in student programs but also propose ways to fix them. Rob’s goal is to advance automated program repair of buggy solutions to introductory programming assignments.

Scaling-CapacityScaling-Capacity

Teaching Computer Science: Capacity Building and Scaling


Last fall, the CRA Education Committee added a new resource to its website for “Teaching Computer Science: Capacity Building and Scaling.” Across the United States and Canada, universities and colleges are facing significant increases in undergraduate computer science (CS) enrollments. This surge has exceeded all previous CS program booms and there is a general sense that the current enrollment growth is substantially different than that of the mid-1980s and late 1990s. CRA’s Generation CS Study provides excellent insight into enrollment trends and their impact on computer science units, diversity, enrollment management strategies, and more.

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CRA-E Showcases Stories of Undergraduate Researchers on its Conquer Website


CRA-E’s new “Undergraduate Research Highlights” series showcases outstanding research done by undergraduate students at universities and colleges across North America. Each article features the story of a successful undergraduate researcher and offers personal insights into their experiences with finding an advisor, undertaking new research projects, and discovering how research can impact their personal and professional futures.

Which Departments Most Often Nominate Students for the CRA Outstanding Undergraduate Researchers Award?


In addition to honoring exceptionally successful students, these awards identify some of the departments that are particularly effective at cultivating and promoting undergraduate research. A total of 94 colleges and universities have nominated students during the last three years.

Michael Ernst and Catherine Putonti Receive the 2018 CRA-E Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentoring Award


The Education Committee of the Computing Research Association (CRA-E) is proud to announce two recipients of the 2018 CRA-E Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentoring Award: Michael Ernst from the University of Washington in Seattle and Catherine Putonti from Loyola University in Chicago.

2017-18 Fellows2017-18 Fellows

CRA-E Graduate Fellows Program Accepting Nominations


The CRA Education Committee is now accepting applications for the CRA-E Graduate Fellows Program. The program provides opportunities for Ph.D. candidates in computing fields to contribute to CRA-E projects, network with computer science education advocates on the committee, engage in advocacy for mentoring undergraduate students and promote undergraduate research and education at the national level.

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Nominations Open for 2018 CRA-E Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentoring Award


This award program honors faculty members in computing who have made a significant impact on students they have mentored. The CRA-E Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentoring Award recognizes faculty members who have provided exceptional mentorship and undergraduate research experiences and, in parallel, guidance on admission and matriculation of these students to research-focused graduate programs in computing.

Poster SessionPoster Session

Expanding the Pipeline – Engaging Undergraduates in Research: UC San Diego Early Research Scholars Program


Engaging undergraduates in research can be an effective way to increase their confidence, perception of science, and sense of belonging. But at many large research universities, it can be difficult for undergraduate students—especially early undergraduates—to find research opportunities. Furthermore, even when they find opportunities, they might not have the background, training, or support to be successful. These issues are particularly acute for women and other underrepresented groups in computer science as they tend to have less pre-college computer science experience.

Conquer logoConquer logo

CRA Education Committee Presents Updated Conquer Website


The Computing Research Association’s Education Committee (CRA-E) is excited to announce a new and improved version of its Conquer website (conquer.cra.org)  for CS undergraduates interested in research and graduate school.  The site also has resources for faculty who are interested in mentoring undergraduate research and helping their students apply to graduate school.

A CS Education Summit in Pittsburgh: Addressing the Challenges of Increasing Interest in Computing at the Undergraduate Level through Institutional Transformation


Given the convergence of burgeoning enrollments in CS across many universities and colleges in the United States and the need to re-imagine the way computer science is taught to address 21st century challenges, the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University is hosting a 2-day summit in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, pending anticipated funding.

CRA-E Co-chairsCRA-E Co-chairs

New CRA Education Committee Co-Chair


At the CRA Education Committee (CRA-E) meeting in June, Lori Pollock (University of Delaware) stepped up to replace Ran Libeskind-Hadas (Harvey Mudd College) as CRA-E co-chair. She will join current co-chair Susanne Hambrusch (Purdue University), and Ran will remain a member of the CRA-E committee.

Profiles in Computing: Yerika Jimenez


As a little girl growing up in the Dominican Republic, Yerika Jimenez, currently a Ph.D. student in computing at the University of Florida, noticed she had a knack for fixing things – cell phones, TVs, radios. Everyone in her community would bring her broken items, and she would return them repaired. A few years later, when Jimenez was nine years old, her family settled in New Jersey, and her fascination with technology continued.

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CRA-E Selects New Graduate Student Fellow


CRA’s Education Committee (CRA-E) is pleased to welcome its new 2017 CRA-E Graduate Student Fellow – Booma Sowkarthiga Balasubramani. The Graduate Fellows Program was established in 2015 to give graduate students the opportunity to contribute to CRA-E projects, engage in advocacy for mentoring undergraduate students, and promote computer science research and undergraduate education at the national level.

Dan GrossmanDan Grossman

Research Highlight: CRA Board Member Dan Grossman


Since I started graduate school in 1997, I have considered myself a member of the programming languages research community — and I continue to attend and publish in the annual conferences of this vibrant computing subfield. But over the last 5-10 years, I have also found myself increasingly passionate about opportunities for computing researchers to focus on ways to influence computing education beyond, for those of us who are academics, our own classrooms and independent studies. Let me share some of the projects I have enjoyed (seriously!) and others I wish I had more time to pursue.

Generation CSGeneration CS

CRA Releases Report on Surge in Computer Science Enrollments


Generation CS: Computer Science Undergraduate Enrollments Surge Since 2006 Across the United States and Canada, universities and colleges are facing a significant increase in enrollment in both undergraduate computer science (CS) courses and programs. The current enrollment surge has exceeded previous CS booms, and there is a general sense that the current growth in enrollment […]

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2017 CRA-E Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentoring Award Winners Announced


The Education Committee of the Computing Research Association (CRA-E) is proud to announce three winners of the CRA-E Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentoring Award. Congratulations to the 2017 award recipients: Margaret Burnett from Oregon State University, Nayda Santiago from the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez Campus, and Margo Seltzer from Harvard University. These outstanding individuals are recognized for providing exceptional mentorship, undergraduate […]

Staying in computingStaying in computing

Why Students Consider Leaving Computing and What Encourages Them to Stay


In CERP’s 2015 Data Buddies survey, computing majors were asked whether they had thought about changing to a non-computing major during the past year. Thirteen percent of students who responded to this question said that they had. The word clouds here were created using students’ comments about the reasons they considered leaving computing and factors that helped them stay. Some of the most frequently encountered words in students’ reasons for considering leaving computing were “classes”, “hard”, “difficult”, “work”, and “time”. On the other hand, students’ responses regarding the factors that helped them stay in computing contained words such as “job”, “degree”, and “friends”.