Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Mini-Course 2015: Survey Results

Another May, another "Computer Science and Games: Just for Girls!" mini-course on the books.  I'm very pleased with how this year went. The course material and games made by the girls are all online, and below I share the results of my usual pre- and post-surveys.

Pre-Course Survey Results

I have the girls fill these in the very first day before we start into any course material.  Some of them did see the code.org video I showed during orientation, which might affect their answers. 18 students filled in the pre-course surveys.  Here are some of the results.

"What made you decide to take this course?"
  • I thought it might be interesting, trying something new.
  • I like video games and I wanted to find out how to make them.
  • it seemed interesting and I enjoy the idea of creating a virtual game
  • Both my parents have jobs involving computers, and I wanted a course that would be hands on.
  • I think It might have been the words "vidio games" In the title, If It was there.
  • The description looked interesting. I was just curious. I anticipated fun activities.
  • I like computers and gameing.
  • My mom chose for me.
  • My dad is a software developper, and I thought it would be interesting.
  • Because I am interested in expanding my knowledge on computer science and how games are made.
  • I wanted to try something different and this course sounded pretty interesting.
  • There was no other good one to choose & my friend chose it.
  • My parents recommended it for me as they have a friend who works with computer science stuff and he has a successful career.
  • It looked interesting and it was just for girls.
  • I decided to take this course because even though i'm not very good with technology, I was always interested in coding and computers. I like to learn new things and it could be good for a job.
  • I like playing video games with my older brother and love the idea of making my own.
  • I thought it would be fun to know a little more about the technology that we use every day.  At school and at home, we use computers a lot so I thought it would be nice to know how to use them more.
  • I'm interested in trying new things and I spend a lot of time on the computer.
"I am confident that I understand what the field of computer science is."
  • Agree: 1
  • Neutral/don't know: 12
  • Disagree: 4
  • Strongly disagree: 1
 "I would consider computer science as a good career for women in general." 
  • Strongly agree: 5
  • Agree: 10
  • Neutral/don't know: 2
  • Disagree: 1
"I would consider computer science as a good career for me."
  • Strongly agree: 1
  • Agree: 7
  • Neutral/don't know: 9
  • Disagree: 1
"I signed up for this course because I was curious about some of the computer science topics (including usability, graphics, or artificial intelligence)."
  •  Strongly agree: 7
  • Agree: 6
  • Neutral/don't know: 4
  • Disagree: 1
"I have previous experience programming."
  •  Strongly agree: 1
  • Agree: 1
  • Neutral/don't know: 3
  • Disagree: 9
  • Strongly disagree: 4

Post-Course Survey Results

Here are some of the results from the survey I gave at the end of the course.  One student injured herself the previous day, so only 17 students filled in this one.

"Would you have signed up for the course if it wasn't just for girls?"
  • Yes: 10
  • No: 7
"Are you glad the course was just for girls?"
  • Yes: 8
  • No: 2
  • I'm happy as long as I'm not the only girl: 7
"I enjoyed learning about what computer science is really all about."
  •  Strongly agree: 9
  • Agree: 8
"It was cool to see how many different areas of study can be connected to computer science."
  • Strongly agree: 4
  • Agree: 11
  • Neutral/don't know: 2
 "I would consider computer science a good career for me."
  •  Strongly agree: 5
  • Agree: 6
  • Neutral/don't know: 6
(What a great improvement over the pre-course responses!)

"I am more likely to try computer science in high school or university after taking this course, or this course has confirmed my desire to do so."
  • Strongly agree: 8
  • Agree: 6
  • Neutral/don't know: 3
(WOW!! :D)

"I liked having a variety of practising computer scientists to help out with the course."
  • Strongly agree: 8
  • Agree: 9


I'm very pleased with these results.  You can check out data from previous years (see list at the bottom of this page), but I think this year's course has had the most positive outcomes.  It could be this particular group of girls, the changes I made to the course (like being in the lab all day and cutting more lecturing), or maybe, just maybe, we are finally starting to see the attitudes of the next generation changing.  Let's hope it's the last one, because it's about time we crack this "women in CS" problem once and for all.


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