• Wright, Rebecca (PI)

Project Details


The Computer Science Living-Learning Community for Women (CS-LLCW) at Rutgers University will help address the need for a diverse computer science (CS) workforce. While CS enrollments have risen substantially in the last five years, and degree production has increased by a double-digit percentage each year from 2010 to 2013, the percentage of graduates who are women remains low (around 14%). The low participation of women in CS negatively impacts the diversity of the computing workforce and the level of technical innovation possible in computing focused organizations. The CS-LLCW project will address this issue by developing a CS Living-Learning Community (LLC) for women that will provide an immersive educational experience and will enhance the recruitment and retention of women in CS. Building on existing research on LCCs in other fields, on broadening participation in computing, and on best practices for CS education, this project will adapt successful practices to CS, develop new research to understand the effectiveness of LLCs, and provide a model for building capacity nationally. The project's research hypothesis is that first-year women college students who are interested in CS, and who participate in the LLC, will be more likely to declare a CS major than those do who not participate in an LLC. Further, among women CS majors, LLC participants will exhibit substantially higher levels of engagement and success throughout their undergraduate years in comparison to their non-LLC peers. In order to study research questions that address this hypothesis, the project will implement and study an LLC for Women in Computer Science at Rutgers to provide mentoring, peer support and exposure to the issues and applications of CS to two cohorts of women students with the goal of increasing their motivation to persist, thrive, and succeed in CS. The long-term goal of this project is to establish best-practice approaches to engaging students in CS during their early years in college. Once established and validated, other institutions will be able to adopt these approaches. Ultimately, the project will help diversify the computing workforce by inspiring and motivating new generations of students to pursue degrees in CS.
Effective start/end date7/1/156/30/17


  • National Science Foundation (National Science Foundation (NSF))


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