Computer Science Department
Two Majors Travel to Seattle to Present Poster (Spring 2017)
Raza Zaidi (left) and Isabel Freihofer (right) Present Poster in Seattle Research Competition (Spring 2017)
Isabel Freihofer and Raza Zaidi (along with their adviser, Gloria Townsend) traveled to Seattle, Washington, March 9-11, 2017, where the students presented a poster about their research. The two students enrolled in a spring 2016 experimental research class, where students reviewed the literature of gender issues in computing. The class also explored reasons for the underrepresentation of women in computing, looking especially at the lack of role models for young girls and women and dwindling interest in computing among girls during middle school. The class used pre- and post-surveys to explore changing attitudes toward computing correlated with studying the programming language, Scratch, in fifth grade. The resulting paper, "Using Scratch and Female Role Models while Storytelling Improves Fifth-Grade Students' Attitudes toward Computing", was accepted for presentation (poster form) in the Microsoft Student Research Contest at the 48th Special Interest Group for Computer Science Education Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education. The contest's paper reviewers accepted only 25 entries, including papers from Bryn Mawr and Haverford Colleges.