Gendered Attrition at the Undergraduate Level

Gendered Attrition at the Undergraduate Level

Sandra Katz (University of Pittsburgh, USA)
Copyright: © 2006 |Pages: 7
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-815-4.ch111
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As Camp showed in her widely cited papers on the “incredible shrinking pipeline” (Camp, 1997; Camp, Miller, & Davies, 2000), women have continuously lagged behind men in earning Bachelor of Science (BS) degrees in computer science (CS) at four-year post-secondary U.S. institutions, despite the fact that the percentage of women earning CS degrees has kept pace with trends in the total number of CS degree recipients. This pattern is illustrated in Figures 1 and 2, which are based on data from the National Center for Education Statistics (National Center for Education Statistics, 2003, Table 282). Our goal is to summarize the proposed causes of, and solutions for, female attrition at the undergraduate level. In times like the present, when the U.S. is experiencing an overall decline in enrollment in undergraduate CS programs (Zweben, 2005), it becomes increasingly important to retain good students—both men and women.

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