Unlocking the Clubhouse: Women in Computing

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MIT Press, 2002 - Computers - 172 pages
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Understanding and overcoming the gender gap in computer science education.

The information technology revolution is transforming almost every aspect of society, but girls and women are largely out of the loop. Although women surf the Web in equal numbers to men and make a majority of online purchases, few are involved in the design and creation of new technology. It is mostly men whose perspectives and priorities inform the development of computing innovations and who reap the lion's share of the financial rewards. As only a small fraction of high school and college computer science students are female, the field is likely to remain a "male clubhouse," absent major changes.

In Unlocking the Clubhouse, social scientist Jane Margolis and computer scientist and educator Allan Fisher examine the many influences contributing to the gender gap in computing. The book is based on interviews with more than 100 computer science students of both sexes from Carnegie Mellon University, a major center of computer science research, over a period of four years, as well as classroom observations and conversations with hundreds of college and high school faculty. The interviews capture the dynamic details of the female computing experience, from the family computer kept in a brother's bedroom to women's feelings of alienation in college computing classes. The authors investigate the familial, educational, and institutional origins of the computing gender gap. They also describe educational reforms that have made a dramatic difference at Carnegie Mellon--where the percentage of women entering the School of Computer Science rose from 7% in 1995 to 42% in 2000--and at high schools around the country.


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User Review  - DoesNotCompute - LibraryThing

Rather than covering the history of women in computing, the book starts with what went wring for women in IT during the 90's. It's other sin is dryness; I can't get past the introduction. In the very beginning, programming was considered "women's work". Read full review


Women out of the Loop
The Magnetic Attraction
Middle and High School A Room of His Own
Computing With a Purpose
Geek Mythology
Living among the Programming Gods The Nexus of Confidence and Interest
Persistence and Resistance Staying in Computer Science
A Tale of 240 Teachers
Changing the University
Changing the Conversation in Computer Science
Research Methodology
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About the author (2002)

Allan Fisher, former Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education in the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University, is President and CEO of Carnegie Technology Education, a Carnegie Mellon education company.

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