Compared to White and Asian students, who are considered the racial and ethnic majority in computing fields, students who are members of underrepresented racial and ethnic groups and students with disabilities (URMD) were 1.5 times more likely to report having seriously considered leaving their graduate program.
Computing Research News
Articles on diversity analysis and efforts.
On April 13-14, more than 400 women graduate students in computing from more than 150 institutions converged on San Francisco, CA, for the 2018 CRA-W Graduate Cohort for Women (CRA-W Grad Cohort). Throughout the two-day workshop, professional connections were made, new friendships were formed, and mentoring relationships with senior researchers were established. CRA-W organizes this workshop as part of its mission to increase the success and participation of women in computing research.
Approximately 100 graduate students in computing and more than 20 speakers assembled on March 16-17 in San Diego, CA, to convene the inaugural CRA Graduate Cohort for Underrepresented Minorities and Persons with Disabilities (URMD Grad Cohort). It was the first gathering of its kind hosted by CRA. This new iteration of the Grad Cohort Workshop focused on the following underrepresented groups in computing: Alaska Native, Black/African American, Hispanic, Native American, Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander, and persons with disabilities. The workshop aimed to increase representation from these groups in computing research by building and mentoring nationwide communities through their graduate studies, and is modeled on the highly successful CRA-W Grad Cohort Workshop for Women.
CRA-WExpanding the Pipeline
The Computing Alliance for Hispanic-Serving Institutions (CAHSI) is a consortium of Hispanic-serving institutions (HSIs) committed to consolidating the strengths, resources, and efforts of public, private, federal, state, and local organizations that share the core value of increasing the number of Hispanics who pursue and complete baccalaureate and advanced degrees in computing areas. CAHSI plays a critical role in evaluating, documenting, and disseminating effective practices that support students in computing disciplines at the critical junctures in the academic pipeline.
Diverse perspectives foster innovation and ensure the needs of many are met. At present, tech companies lack demographic diversity. As the director of the Center for Evaluating the Research Pipeline (CERP) at CRA, Jane Stout studies factors that often encourage (or discourage) people from underrepresented groups from pursuing technical careers. Recently, Stout led an interactive and insightful webinar exploring the issues.
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.
The Computing Research Association is pleased to announce a new iteration of the Graduate Cohort Workshop designed specifically for underrepresented minorities (URMs) in computing and persons with disabilities. Applications are now open for the inaugural CRA URM Graduate Cohort Workshop, which will be held March 16-17, 2018 in San Diego, Calif.
CRA-WExpanding the Pipeline
The dialogue about broadening participation in computing must extend beyond a narrow focus on women, in general, to one that focuses on the intersectionality of race and gender if the computing educational community will be more inclusive. Engaging more diverse perspectives in computing education can be described as a social justice issue, but also promoted as a necessity to increase innovations in industry (National Science Foundation and National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, 2013). More specifically, to succeed in increasing the participation of black women in computing, there must first be an acknowledgement that black women’s experiences in computing are different from those of other groups. Subsequently, an educational framework can be developed to address these differences.
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.
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.