Promising Practices

How Does the Physical Environment Affect Women's Entry and Persistence in Computing? Design Physical Space that Has Broad Appeal (Case Study 1)

How Does the Physical Environment Affect Women's Entry and Persistence in Computing? Design Physical Space that Has Broad Appeal (Case Study 1)

The décor of physical spaces conveys messages about the kinds of people who belong there and the kinds of activities that should be done there. Understanding this influence allows us to actively craft an environment that makes a broad range of people feel welcome in computing. 

How Do You Recruit or Retain Women Through Inclusive Pedagogy? Equal Access: Inclusive Strategies for Teaching Students with Disabilities (Case Study 3)

How Do You Recruit or Retain Women Through Inclusive Pedagogy? Equal Access: Inclusive Strategies for Teaching Students with Disabilities (Case Study 3)

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. More students with learning and physical disabilities are in the educational pipeline than ever before. Being aware of the issues, tools, and services for students with disabilities makes it easier for them to learn and for you to teach them.

How Can Encouragement Increase Persistence in Computing? Encouragement Works in Academic Settings (Case Study 1)

How Can Encouragement Increase Persistence in Computing? Encouragement Works in Academic Settings (Case Study 1)

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. Simple though encouragement is, fewer than half of the faculty members in the average computer science department in the United States say they do it.

How Can Encouragement Increase Persistence in Computing? Encouragement is Effective in Work Settings (Case Study 2)

How Can Encouragement Increase Persistence in Computing? Encouragement Is Effective in Work Settings (Case Study 2)

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. Encouragement is a powerful tool for increasing employee confidence and engagement, but it seems to be underutilized in the workforce. The example in this case study illustrates the profound positive impact a simple encouraging conversation can have on a career.

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