About this paper

Appears in:
Page: 3002 (abstract only)
Publication year: 2011
ISBN: 978-84-615-3324-4
ISSN: 2340-1095

Conference name: 4th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 14-16 November, 2011
Location: Madrid, Spain


W. Dubow

National Center for Women & Information Technology (UNITED STATES)
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that by 2018, there will be nearly 1.4 million computing-related jobs in the US, up 22% from 2008. Unfortunately, the number of people graduating from US higher education institutions with Computer or Information Sciences (CIS) degrees has decreased steadily since 2004. Within this critical skill shortage is an even more troubling inequity – a severe under-representation of women.

In the US in 2009, women earned 57% of all undergraduate degrees and 52% of all Mathematics and Science degrees, but only 18% of CIS undergraduate degrees. Women’s lack of representation begins earlier than post-secondary education, however. While all students are significantly less exposed to computer programming than to the use of basic computer applications such as office software in US high schools, more than 60% of the 1.5 million college-bound high-school students surveyed who reported no high-school computer coursework or experience at all were girls.

Not surprisingly, this gender imbalance continues into the workforce. In the past decade, women comprised more than half (55-58%) of the overall professional workforce. While women’s representation in the life, physical and social sciences professions has increased since 2000, the percentage of women in computing-related occupations has declined.

This gender inequity in computing is far from unique to the US, but the US has been expending considerable resources trying to understand the gender imbalance in computing fields and trying to rectify it.

One of these reform efforts is the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT). Funded by the US National Science Foundation and by private corporations, NCWIT shares social-science research with the computing community in the US to encourage stakeholders to take action to help bring gender equity to computing fields. Among the many materials and opportunities NCWIT provides are: statistics about the participation of girls and women in technology study and careers; promising and best practices for recruiting, retaining, and advancing females in the field; and the opportunity to participate in an organized activist movement aimed at increasing the gender diversity among creators of technology. NCWIT has found that people in the computing community, whether at the secondary or post-secondary levels, or in industry, need data to make a case in their organizations for striving toward gender parity.

To arm stakeholders with data, NCWIT publishes a Scorecard, a compendium of the most up-to-date indicators available to describe the participation of women in technology in the US. The Scorecard contains gender-focused data spanning the pipeline, from school to career. It also contains pointers to other NCWIT materials that shift the reader from learning to doing. Case studies enliven the Scorecard and suggest to readers that they can implement new practices and thereby make a difference in their own organizations.

This poster contains a representative selection of compelling data points and recommended practices. While some practices are US-specific, this poster will include only those that have international applicability. The Scorecard’s author will present the poster and simultaneously host a live demonstration of the online platform where visitors can download charts, graphs, Powerpoint slides and a PDF for free. Free, hardcopy materials also will be available to attendees.
keywords: gender, us, academic, workforce.
author = {Dubow, W.},
series = {4th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2011 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-615-3324-4},
issn = {2340-1095},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Madrid, Spain},
month = {14-16 November, 2011},
year = {2011},
pages = {3002}}
AU - W. Dubow
SN - 978-84-615-3324-4/2340-1095
PY - 2011
Y1 - 14-16 November, 2011
CI - Madrid, Spain
JO - 4th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2011 Proceedings
SP - 3002
EP - 3002
ER -
W. Dubow (2011) US SCORECARD ON WOMEN IN TECHNOLOGY, ICERI2011 Proceedings, p. 3002.