Women in computing - take 2.

Commun. ACM 02/2009; 52:68-76. DOI: 10.1145/1461928.1461947
Source: DBLP

ABSTRACT Around the world, women have made some progress in the field of computing over the past decade. Women now play a heightened role in technology leadership, and they have gained representation at many important points in organizational hierarchies. The proportion of undergraduate computer science degrees received by women has declined sharply -- from 37% in 1985 to 22% in 2005. Over more than a decade, a host of initiatives has evolved to increase and sustain the participation of women, at all levels of academia, in computing. At the faculty level, the primary goals are to recruit more women faculty and ensure that they ultimately achieve tenure and promotion. Improving women's representation in computing must also entail more enlightened governmental institutions and policies. Every computing professional, male and female alike, can contribute to the increased participation of women in the field. Long-term success depends on the entire community taking responsibility for making computing a broadly supportive and inclusive discipline.

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    ABSTRACT: This survey paper examines the issue of female under-representation in computing education and industry, which has been shown from empirical studies to be a problem for over two decades. While various measures and intervention strategies have been implemented to increase the interest of girls in computing education and industry, the level of success has been discouraging. The primary contribution of this paper is to provide an analysis of the extensive research work in this area. It outlines the progressive decline in female representation in computing education. It also presents the key arguments that attempt to explain the decline and intervention strategies. We conclude that there is a need to further explore strategies that will encourage young female learners to interact more with computer educational games.
    International Journal of Computer Science and Applications 10/2014; 5(9).
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    ABSTRACT: Teaching basic computational concepts and skills to school children is currently a curricular focus in many countries. Running parallel to this trend are advances in programming environments and teaching methods which aim to make computer science more accessible, and more motivating. In this paper, we describe the design and evaluation of Flip, a programming language that aims to help 11-15 year olds develop computational skills through creating their own 3D role-playing games. Flip has two main components: 1) a visual language (based on an interlocking blocks design common to many current visual languages), and 2) a dynamically updating natural language version of the script under creation. This programming-language/natural-language pairing is a unique feature of Flip, designed to allow learners to draw upon their familiarity with natural language to “decode the code”. Flip aims to support young people in developing an understanding of computational concepts as well as the skills to use and communicate these concepts effectively. This paper investigates the extent to which Flip can be used by young people to create working scripts, and examines improvements in their expression of computational rules and concepts after using the tool. We provide an overview of the design and implementation of Flip before describing an evaluation study carried out with 12-13 year olds in a naturalistic setting. Over the course of 8 weeks, the majority of students were able to use Flip to write small programs to bring about interactive behaviours in the games they created. Furthermore, there was a significant improvement in their computational communication after using Flip (as measured by a pre/post-test). An additional finding was that girls wrote more, and more complex, scripts than did boys, and there was a trend for girls to show greater learning gains relative to the boys.
    Computers & Education 01/2015; · 2.63 Impact Factor

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