Driving systemic change in K-16 computing education.

Despite increased enrollment in undergraduate departments across the U.S., computing is overwhelmingly dominated by white and Asian (race), able-bodied (ability), middle to upper class (socioeconomic status), cisgender men (gender). This lack of diversity is evident in academic/workplace cultures and biased/harmful technologies that negatively impact and exclude people from non-dominant identities.

What makes AiiCE unique?

While many efforts to broaden participation in computing exist, these alone have not significantly increased the representation of students from groups that are minoritized in computing due to the following reasons:   

  1. K-16 courses lack fundamentally important topics of identity and its societal impact. 
  2. Efforts have prioritized student-focused, deficit-based interventions such as mentoring, bridge programs, and financial supports. 
  3. Efforts do not adequately address institutional cultures, policies, and practices that have marginalized people from non-dominant identities. 

AiiCE activities are designed to address these limitations by decentering minoritized students and instead targeting the people, policies, and practices that negatively impact student sense of belonging and course/degree entry, retention, and completion. 

How will AiiCE influence change?

AiiCE uses a collective impact approach, which leverages the strengths of each member organization to develop/enhance activities to create systemic change across K-16 computing education. All Alliance activities are organized under four domains (i.e., constellations) – training, curricula & pedagogy, research, and policy – with the aim of “increasing the entry, retention and course/degree completion rates of high-school and undergraduate students from groups that are historically underrepresented in computing through evidence-based, identity-inclusive interventions.”