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UW CSE featured: “Some Universities Crack Code in Drawing Women to Computer Science”


“From left, Camille Birch and Robby Blood during a computer programming course at the University of Washington in Seattle on Wednesday. Women at the university earned 30 percent of the computer science degrees this year, well above the national average.”

The New York Times reports:

“One of the reasons so few women work in tech is that few choose to study computer science or engineering. Only 18 percent of computer science graduates in the United States are women, down from 37 percent in 1985.

“At a few top college programs, though, that appears to be changing.

“At Carnegie Mellon University, 40 percent of incoming freshmen to the School of Computer Science are women, the largest group ever. At the University of Washington, another technology powerhouse, women earned 30 percent of computer science degrees this year. At Harvey Mudd College, 40 percent of computer science majors are women, and this year, women represented more than half of the engineering graduates for the first time.

Slide1“These examples provide a road map for how colleges can help produce a more diverse group of computer science graduates.”

What are we doing in UW CSE?  Read about it here.

What impact is this having?  We have a long way to go, but we are graduating Bachelors women at a rate more than twice that of other research-intensive universities – see the figure to the right.

Interest in computer science is booming among all students.  See the data here.

Learn about DawgBytes, our extensive K-12 outreach program, here.

And read today’s New York Times article here.

(The New York Times story is also linked from the Seattle Times “Education Lab Blog,” which states “The University of Washington is one of a few colleges leading the way in an effort to get more female students interested in studying computer science.”)