CERP data indicate students who engage in a formal research experience during college are more likely to apply for graduate school and enroll in a Ph.D. program after college, compared to students without formal research experience.
Computing Research News
Articles relevant to the CRA Center for Evaluating the Research Pipeline (CERP).
CERP data indicate first year and second year students were proportionally less likely to attend a technical conference in computing over the past year compared to upper division students. This finding is important because participation in conferences may help foster engagement and retention in computing, particularly among first and second year students.
CRA’s own Jane Stout, director of the CRA Center for Evaluating the Research Pipeline (CERP), was recently featured in the article “Q&A: Researcher Shares Strategies to Increase Diversity in Tech,” in EdTech Magazine: Focus on Higher Education. Amy Burroughs, managing editor of EdTech spoke to Jane about why the lack of diversity in tech persists, how institutions benefit from diverse groups and how IT leaders can build more diverse teams. Drawing from her social science background and her current research on factors that influence women and minorities pursuing computing careers, Jane emphasized building a sense of belonging and community and encouraged IT managers to actively recruit women who can serve as role models and mentors. She also encourages IT managers to recognize that there are different types of effective leadership styles.
Mentorship is an important part of graduate school as it can foster students’ growth into successful computing professionals. CERP’s Data Buddies survey for computing graduate students found that Ph.D. and Master’s level students consider different groups of individuals to be their mentors.
We found most undergraduate computing students believe computing careers afford ample opportunity to be in a position of influence and serve humanity. However, students believe computing careers afford relatively less opportunity to spend time with family. These findings suggest computing careers may be unattractive to groups of students who place strong value on family.
CERPCRA-WExpanding the Pipeline
The Women in Engineering ProActive Network (WEPAN) held the 2017 Change Leader Forum in Westminster, Colorado from June 12 – 14, 2017. The Forum provided attendees an unparalleled opportunity to engage with diversity and inclusion advocates, and learn research based best-practices related to gender equity and inclusion in engineering. Nearly 200 attendees representing a variety of institutions and roles participated in the Forum, including university leaders, corporate partners, engineering faculty, K-12 teachers, and academic diversity officers. CERP Director Jane Stout was a panelist on the opening keynote panel presentation “A Research Agenda on Gender in Engineering and Computing.”
CRA-WExpanding the Pipeline
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. The program is working with CERP to understand the impact ERSP has on its participants.
Gender is complex; while many people identify as either “man” or “woman”, others identify as something other than traditional binary gender options (i.e. “non-binary” gender). CERP data indicate non-binary students report lower levels of peer support compared to their men and women peers.
This infographic compares post-graduation plans of undergraduate students with different REU (Research Experience for Undergraduates) experiences using CERP’s annual spring survey for graduating students. Specifically, CRA-W/CDC Alliance’s Collaborative Research Experiences for Undergraduates (CREU) participants, students who participated in other REUs, and students with no REU experience were compared in terms of whether they were attending graduate school (Master’s or Ph.D.) in the upcoming fall semester. The students included in this analysis are men from racial/ethnic groups who are underrepresented in computing and women because the CREU program is targeted specifically toward these students. Approximately the same number of women and men are in all three groups.
CERPCRA-WExpanding the Pipeline
The CRA’s Center for Evaluating the Research Pipeline (CERP) turns four years old this month. During the past four years, CERP has been working steadily toward its goal of building diversity in computing through evaluation and social science research. CERP is staffed by Director Jane Stout, Research Scientist Burcin Tamer, and Research Associate Heather Wright. As seen on CERP’s About page, CERP staff are an eclectic mix of social scientists with expertise in quantitative and qualitative methods and a passion for diversity research.