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Getting girls into IT

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Revision as of 02:17, May 11, 2012 by Jlstrecker (Talk | contribs)

What you can do right now

  • Pledge, or convince someone else to pledge to write a blog post for Ada Lovelace Day.
  • Contribute a profile to the List of women in Open Source.
  • Write some class materials for programming workshops. We are working on a way to make these materials editable collaboratively. In the meantime, feel free to use and edit them as you wish..
  • Write a sample program in Alice, Pippy/Python, Squeak, or any other suitable tool or language, which can be played with by learning programmer
  • Add your story to this page.

Personal stories and inspiration

  • The Eniac Programmers were the first real computer programmers. Their ballistics program used hundreds of wires and 3000 switches, during World War II. And, they were all women.

Click here to add your short stories and reasons why you love working in ICT that can be shared at events for girls to inspire young women to enter the industry.

Perspectives, Experiences and Anecdotes

“I arranged for a group of girls from my school to attend Go Girl, Go For IT, but when the bus arrived to take us, nobody showed up. They'd decided to have a day off and go shopping instead.” — Jody Brokhus

"I meet with high school students each week and, as their mentor, help them learn how to program. Their high school doesn't offer any computer science courses, so a lot of students have never considered it as a career path. One girl had never programmed before, and now she's fallen in love with it and she'll be majoring in computer science." —Jaymie Strecker

Click here to add your experiences of working with young women and girls in encouraging them to enter ICT to help others be more successful in their work. If you have encountered challenges please also add them for others to learn from and overcome.

Workshop, Talks and further resources materials

Ideas

If one of these ideas strikes your fancy and you decide to implement it, please feel free to use this page to record or link to your results.

  • Professional development courses to be developed for TAFE/University course teachers on teaching a diverse student body. These could count towards the mandatory PD quota for these teachers.
  • Mentoring: there is a large body of research (links here?) pointing towards the efficacy of mentoring in keeping women in the field of technology. These mentors needn't be women, although of course female role models are good to have.
  • Hands-on workshops. Rather than a hand-wavy 'IT is fun' message, actually give kids exposure to programming at a holiday program, school enrichment day or similar.
    • These are even more effective if there is something to take home at the end of the day. A CD/DVD or a USB wristband (link for illustration only, not an endorsement) which can have the tools and the student's work written to it will allow show-and-tell and further explorations later on.
    • Feel free to use, be inspired by, or extend these teaching resources if you arrange a programming workshop.
  • Resources for careers advisors, to avoid the "girls aren't interested in IT/Engineering/Science" message which unfortunately still gets through.
    • Profiles of men and women in diverse roles in technology.
  • Call your local library's young adult department and offer to teach a free "introduction to Whatever IT thing You Do" class. I did this a few times at the Flint Public Library and many high school girls showed up, eager to learn. - Librarian Avenger

Workshop notes

Research resources

Books

Articles / Essays / Papers / Presentations

Blogs

Strategies

Global

Australia

Organisations

linux.conf.au 2009 Workshop notes

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