Resources

Members of the Social Science Advisory Board (SSAB) support the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) through their research and knowledge about women and information technology.  The depth and breadth of perspectives and approaches that SSAB members and visitors bring to the study of women and computing are illustrated in examples of their recent research projects.  In the research summaries that follow, we see expertise across social science fields, and theoretical and empirical issues and findings with implications for diversity and the full participation of wome

Which computing majors are right for me?

This card, co-branded with ACM, explains how computing interests and talents line up with different undergraduate degrees and the careers that follow.

How Do You Recruit or Retain Women Through Inclusive Pedagogy? The Conversational Classroom (Case Study 1)

Women and minority students are not in computing courses under the same conditions as their white male classmates. Instructional practices offer opportunities to level the playing field and improve the retention of underrepresented students. Professor William Waite abstained from lecturing his students on assigned reading and relied instead on the students to direct the information discussed in the classroom.

Encouragement Practice - Case Study 3

Encouragement increases self-efficacy, which is the belief in one’s ability to successfully perform a task. Because we are more likely to engage in tasks that we believe we can perform successfully, encouragement may be especially useful for attracting women to male-stereotyped fields such as computing. The case study written by Gloria Townsend describes the impact she and her colleagues have had by making encouraging comments to women in their courses.

NCWIT Tips for Startup Members

NCWIT Tips for Startup Members is a series of action items to help you implement or improve recruitment and retention practices, avoid unconscious bias, manage talent, and more.

How Can Companies Promote Innovation with Diverse Employees? Patenting Learning Communities (Case Study 1)

Diverse work teams can improve innovation, problem-solving, and productivity. Patenting is one important measure of recognized and rewarded innovation efforts in IT, but female patenting rates are quite low. A few companies have started patenting or innovation communities to increase women’s participation. In order to reap the benefits of diverse innovation, two companies implement “inventor learning communities” to increase female participation in innovation and patenting.

NCWIT Fact Sheet

The NCWIT Fact Sheet provides a one-page description of NCWIT at-a-glance: why we exist, who we are, and what we do.

Talking Points

Institutional barriers (IBs) are policies, procedures, or situations that systematically disadvantage certain groups of people. IBs exist in any majority-minority group situation. When an initial population is fairly similar (e.g., in male-dominated professions), systems naturally emerge to meet the needs of this population. If these systems do not change with the times, they can inhibit the success of new members with different needs. IBs often seem natural or “just the way things are around here.”

Supervising-in-a-Box Series: Performance Review/Talent Management

Supervising-in-a-Box: Performance Review/Talent Management provides supervisors with resources for reducing biases in performance evaluation and talent management systems. This “Box” includes tip sheets, resources for identifying and reducing biases, templates, evaluation tools, key takeaways, and background information on unconscious biases.

How Do Stereotype Threats Affect Retention? Better Approaches to Well-Intentioned, but Harmful Messages (Case Study 1)

Stereotype threat harms both performance and motivation by reducing our feelings of competence, belonging, and trust in our colleagues. However, careful thought, education, and regular assessment of diversity practices can help minimize incidents of stereotype threat. Examples show how instructors and advisors can minimize stereotype threat by creating an accepting environment where students feel at ease and are recognized for their achievements. In addition, student test scores improve and gender gaps are eliminated when students are taught that intelligence increases through effort.

Top 5 Reasons You Should Work at a Startup

Listing the top five reasons to work at a startup, this card encourages computing professionals to consider jobs with members of the NCWIT Entrepreneurial Alliance. 

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How Do You Recruit or Retain Women through Inclusive Pedagogy? Designing for Diversity (Case Study 2)

Women and minority students are not in computing courses under the same conditions as their white male classmates. Instructional practices offer opportunities to level the playing field and improve the retention of underrepresented students. A new, smaller introductory computer science class tailored for inexperienced students at the University of Virginia recruited more minority and women students and resulted in many more students declaring a major in computer science.

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