We’ll see you at SIGCSE 2019! #NCWITOntheRoad


Computer science educators will gather on February 27 – March 2 in Minneapolis, Minnesota for SIGCSE 2019, and NCWIT will be among them to share new ideas with other educators and experts working to develop, implement, and engage students in computing at all levels of instruction.

Follow NCWIT on Twitter for live updates and recommended resources, using #NCWITOnTheRoad. And, catch additional conversation by following @SIGCSE_TS and #SIGCSE2019.

(Note: All times and locations are subject to change. Please verify logistics at the conference.)

EngageCSEdu: Booth Number 427

EngageCSEdu LogoStop by the NCWIT EngageCSEdu booth and learn how to foster diversity in your introductory Computer Science (CS) courses with quality content and engaging pedagogy. EngageCSEdu is a platform for CS faculty teaching introductory level courses to find and share engaging materials for their courses. All materials in the collection make use of at least one “Engagement Practice:” research-based techniques for engaging ALL students. Because it is peer-reviewed, being published in EngageCSEdu offers another way for faculty to demonstrate teaching excellence.

BPC Alliance: Booth Number 421

Be sure to stop by the BPC Alliance booth if you are interested in broadening participation in computing. Representatives from AccessComputing, AccessCSforAll, ASSECT (BATEC), AWIS’ ARC Network, CRA-W, CS Unplugged Accessibility, iAAMCS, Lighthouse, NCWIT, SciGirls Code, and STARS Computing Corps will staff this triple booth, ready to help you strategize to diversify computing.

NCWIT Reception

Friday, March 1, 2019, 6:00 to 7:00 p.m. CST // Location: Hyatt: Northstar A & B (2nd floor)

The NCWIT Academic Alliance will host a reception sponsored by Microsoft Research at SIGCSE. NCWIT invites faculty members of higher education institutions to attend our reception. Both current NCWIT members and those interested in becoming members of NCWIT are welcome. Drinks and light hors d’oeuvres will be served.


  • Propagating Educational Innovations // Session 1I: Thursday, February 28, 2019, 10:45 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. CST // Location: Hyatt Greenway H/I (2nd floor)

    Many great teaching techniques are presented every year at SIGCSE and other CS education conferences. Unfortunately, most of them achieve very limited adoption, with few instructors incorporating these ideas into their classrooms. There is significant literature on how to encourage instructors to adopt educational innovations in other STEM fields, but the CS education community has made only limited strides in this area. This session will feature an interactive discussion of some of the barriers that prevent the adoption of good ideas, what solutions are available, and a brief presentation of the results of an ITiCSE working group on this topic. Attendees will leave the session better equipped to promote the adoption of educational innovations, either their own or ones that they have decided to champion.

    presented by NCWIT Social Scientist Christopher Lynnly Hovey and colleagues

  • Understanding Who Enrolls in Introductory Computing Courses at Community Colleges // Session 1C: Thursday, February 28, 2019, 11:10 to 11:35 a.m. CST // Location: Hyatt Greenway B/C (2nd floor)

    Effective teaching requires understanding where students are coming from. Retaining students who have been historically underrepresented in computing requires the same, especially in introductory courses. This paper draws from surveys of students in introductory computing courses at seven geographically dispersed community colleges. We use K-means cluster analysis to differentiate students based on their responses to questions measuring constructs related to student success in computing courses and persistence. The resulting five clusters were compared on outcome variables, including final grades, intent to persist in computing, and gender and race/ethnicity. We focus on community colleges because they are uniquely well-positioned to broaden participation in computing; however, the implications extend beyond the community college context. We conclude by discussing methodological and pedagogical implications, including how findings can challenge assumptions and stereotypes about introductory computing students.

    presented by NCWIT Research Scientist & NCWIT EngageCSEdu Director Beth Quinn, NCWIT Director of Evaluation & Senior Research Scientist Wendy DuBow, and colleagues

  • The New NSF Requirement for Broadening Participation in Computing (BPC) Plans: Community Advice and Resources // Session 2J: Thursday, February 28, 2019, 1:45 to 3:00 p.m. CST // Location: Hyatt: Northstar A (2nd floor)

    The CISE directorate of the NSF is rolling out a requirement that all NSF grants include a Broadening Participation in Computing (BPC) plan (www.nsf.gov/cise/bpc/). This has the potential to drive important institutional change across CS departments in the U.S. This panel of BPC experts will offer their perspectives on meaningful BPC activities, talk about existing BPC programs, and share BPC-related resources that can help PIs and departments craft high-quality BPC plans. The panelists will offer contrasting perspectives on topics such as K-12 outreach, the allocation of department funds for BPC, faculty engagement, and first steps departments should take. Ultimately, NSF review panels made up of CISE community members will evaluate BPC plans, but we hope to spark productive conversations in the interest of fostering institutional change to achieve the social imperative of BPC.

    NCWIT Director of Evaluation & Senior Research Scientist Wendy DuBow will speak on this panel, along with representatives from five other organizations.

  • Survey Results on Why CS Faculty Adopt New Teaching Practices // Session 3G: Thursday, February 28, 2019, 4:35 to 5:00 p.m. CST // Location: Hyatt: Grand Central (1st floor)

    In a previous paper, we explored results from the first stage of a two-part research project designed to uncover what influences Computer Science (CS) faculty to adopt new teaching practices. In the first phase, we conducted interviews, classroom observations, and focus groups with faculty to better understand the organizational, individual, and social factors that influence faculty adoption. Here we discuss findings from the second phase of the project, which uses survey data from 821 CS faculty at 595 institutions in the U.S. to investigate the prevalence of themes uncovered during the qualitative phase. Results show that faculty who tried an innovation were motivated primarily by concerns for students’ learning and course experience, including their engagement and participation. Also important were the “fit” with existing practices and tools, and the logistics of implementing an innovation. Factors that reduced faculty willingness to try an innovation include a lack of time, logistical issues, and satisfaction with their current teaching practices. Faculty learned about the innovations they later adopted through presentations and workshops at conferences and at their home institutions, and through conversations with respected colleagues who teach in similar contexts. Implications for encouraging more widespread usage of teaching techniques that improve diversity and student learning are discussed.

    presented by NCWIT Senior Research Scientist Lecia Barker, NCWIT Social Scientist Christopher Lynnly Hovey, and colleagues

  • Broadening Participation in Computing: A Call to Action for Universities and Community Colleges // Session BOF #12B: Thursday, February 28, 2019, 6:30 to 7:20 p.m. CST // Location: Hyatt: Lake Minnetonka (4th floor)

    Over half of community college (CC) students are non-white, and more than half of all Hispanic and Black undergraduates start at community college. Given that CCs enroll minorities and women in larger numbers than universities, it is imperative for both universities and CCs to engage in collaborative efforts to broaden the participation of diverse peoples in the computing field. Such efforts could include, but not be limited to, the creation of a national broadening participation in computing (BPC) alliance, structured transfer pathways from the CC to the university, the inclusion of a CS Principles course for college, and changing the commonly held perceptions of CCs. Brainstorming, and then building these strategic partnerships, requires that experts from various backgrounds come together to share knowledge and experiences that contribute to a better understanding of the role such collaborative efforts could play with universities and CCs in BPC efforts in CS and information technology.

    NCWIT Director of Evaluation & Senior Research Scientist Wendy DuBow will speak in this session, along with six Academic Alliance and K-12 Alliance member representatives.

  • Frequency of Instructor- and Student-Centered Teaching Practices in Introductory CS Courses // Session 4: Friday, March 1, 2019, 11:35 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. CST // Location: Hyatt: Grand North (1st floor)

    Despite growing promotion of student-centered teaching, few studies have assessed how widely these practices have diffused throughout Computer Science (CS) higher education. Studies on teaching practices often treat instructor- and student-centered learning as being dichotomous. Recent research indicates that this reductionist model misinterprets what actually goes on in CS classrooms. For example, a recent study found that most CS faculty categorized their teaching practices as equally student-centered and instructor-centered. We contribute to this scholarship by reporting the results of a survey disseminated to 821 CS educators in 595 universities, colleges, and community colleges in the U.S. Participants were asked to report how frequently they employed several instructor- or student-centered teaching practices and tools during the most recent semester that they taught a specific course. Results indicate that when asked to reflect on specific behaviors within a certain timeframe, faculty reported using instructor-centered teaching practices, especially delivering content via lecture, more than student-centered practices. However, most faculty also reported using at least one student-centered technique, albeit less frequently, throughout the semester. This study found few differences across certain situational and demographic variables (e.g., institution type, tenure status, etc.). Faculty justify their teaching choices with concern for negative evaluations, desire for student learning, large enrollments, heavy teaching loads, and retaining underrepresented students.

    presented by NCWIT Senior Research Scientist Lecia Barker, NCWIT Social Scientist Christopher Lynnly Hovey, and colleagues

  • Four Models for Including Community Colleges in Broadening Participation: A Call to Action // Session 4K: Friday, March 1, 2019, 10:45 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. CST // Location: Hyatt: Northstar B (2nd floor)

    While Computer Science (CS) jobs are growing rapidly, universities are not producing enough CS graduates to fill a projected shortage of almost a million workers by 2020. To add to this problem, there is a striking lack of diversity in the graduates of CS programs nationwide. Of the degrees awarded, the overwhelming number – 80% – were awarded to males, while only 5% went to African-Americans, 18% to Asians, and 9% to Hispanics. Bringing community colleges into the fold will enable us to confront this projected workforce shortage. More importantly, it will enable us to diversify one of the most important fields of our time, Computer and Information Sciences, as more than half of community college students are non-white, and more than half of all Hispanic and Black undergraduates start at community college.

    NCWIT Director of Evaluation & Senior Research Scientist Wendy DuBow will speak in this session, along with four Academic Alliance and K-12 Alliance member representatives.

  • Leading Conversations about Microaggressions, Bias, and Other Difficult Topics // Session 5J: Friday, March 1, 2019, 1:45 to 3:00 p.m. CST // Location: Hyatt: Northstar A (2nd floor)

    Many SIGCSE attendees are committed to inclusive teaching practices and creating an inclusive culture within their classrooms; yet, advocating for and sustaining these initiatives may require having difficult conversations with our colleagues and students. Understandably, many faculty are unsure about how to talk about sensitive topics such as race and gender with their colleagues and students. Research suggests that practicing some of these difficult conversations is essential to achieve the goals of inclusive teaching and culture. In our well attended session at SIGCSE in 2018, attendees learned strategies for responding to bias in academic settings. This was facilitated by playing two rounds of a research-based game developed by the NSF project CSTeachingTips.org (#1339404). This session will extend the work begun last year by helping attendees to replicate this activity with their colleagues. In this special session, attendees will first play the game to practice those strategies in small groups and will then receive facilitation tips and guidance for conducting this activity on their own. All attendees will receive a printed copy of the game and a link to download and print more copies.

    NCWIT Director of Evaluation & Senior Research Scientist Wendy DuBow will speak in this session, along with four Academic Alliance and K-12 Alliance member representatives.

  • SIGCSE@50: Broadening Participation // Session 6M: Friday, March 1, 2019, 3:45 to 5:00 p.m. CST // Location: Hyatt: Great Lakes A1 & A2 (2nd floor)

    Participants will learn about and discuss recent research on the pathways by which women students access technology education at a large public institution.

    NCWIT Senior Research Scientist Lecia Barker will speak in this session, along with two Academic Alliance member representatives.

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