Creating Inclusive Undergraduate Computing Programs

Creating Inclusive Undergraduate Computing Programs with NCWIT's Tech Inclusion Journey Platform

The goal of this workshop is to equip attendees with knowledge and skills to utilize NCWIT’s Undergraduate Tech Inclusion JourneyTM online platform within their home departments to assist with creating an inclusive departmental culture for students of all intersecting backgrounds.

This workshop is designed for faculty, staff, and administrators associated with computing programs. NCWIT works with academic computing programs to facilitate their implementation of strategic, systemic diversity-based change efforts based on their own institutional contexts. In this workshop, the facilitators— research associates from NCWIT’s higher education team--will present the NCWIT Undergraduate Systemic Change Model, which comprehensively illustrates the systemic components of a computing program where change efforts can be focused to recruit and retain a diverse student body, while also fostering and inclusive departmental culture. Facilitators will also interactively demonstrate how attendees can use NCWIT’s new Undergraduate Tech Inclusion JourneyTM online platform within their home departments to facilitate strategic planning processes for their DEI change efforts.

The Undergraduate Tech Inclusion JourneyTM (TIJ) is a unique, research-based framework and software platform that empowers change in higher education institutions to implement systemic, sustainable approaches to create inclusive cultures. It brings together 15+ years of NCWIT research and experience working with institutions of higher education and addresses typical pitfalls of traditional approaches to diversity and inclusion such as overreliance on “diversity training” and other mandatory “compliance” based efforts, use of “piecemeal” or “checkbox” solutions rather than addressing change at a complex systemic level. Instead, the TIJ employs a strategic, collaborative approach that guides departmental change leaders through a structured three-step journey of self-assessment, consensus building on needs and priorities, and guidance for implementation and evaluation. Each step is informed by research in organizational theory, communities of practice, and diversity in technology, and provides clear and applied explanation of social science concepts. The TIJ attends to intersectionality, focusing on dismantling intersecting systems of oppression to make classrooms and departmental culture more equitable and inclusive for a wide range of minoritized student groups. It also encourages users to include a diverse range of stakeholders in self-assessment and strategic planning, and evaluation metrics are embedded in the tool to help organizations assess the impact of change efforts across intersectional demographic groups. By utilizing the TIJ to support the implementation of DEI change efforts in a strategic, systemic manner, faculty, staff, and administrators will be able to recruit, retain, and graduate more intersectionally diverse students in their programs more effectively.

3 hours

Jamie L. Huber Ward, Christopher L. Hovey, S. Kiersten Ferguson, Sarayu Sundar, and Sherri L. Sanders