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ACM Transactions on Accessible Computing
This quarterly publication is a
quarterly journal that publishes
refereed articles addressing issues
of computing as it impacts the
lives of people with disabilities.
The journal will be of particular
interest to SIGACCESS members
and delegrates to its affiliated
conference (i.e., ASSETS), as well
as other international accessibility
be examined through
a lens for impact,
not just novelty.
well, but that it is important for the
NSF to clarify the meaning of the different criteria, especially the Broader
Impacts criteria as it is less well understood than Intellectual Merit.
The National Science Board recommends that five elements be considered in the review for both merit review
criteria. Of particular interest to us is
element two, which appears to require
innovation and applies to Broader
Impacts activities, including those intended to increase the participation
of women, persons with disabilities,
and underrepresented minorities in
STEM. It suggests that broadening participation activities should be innovative. Unfortunately, this demand for
innovation is counter to our belief and
experience that a balance between innovation and implementation is needed to achieve broader participation of
underrepresented groups. Hopefully,
in the implementation of the clarified
Merit Review Criteria, NSF will try to
achieve a balance between innovation
and implementation in broadening
participation-focused awards. This
may require a new interpretation or revision of element two of the criteria.
implications for Broadening
Participation in Computing
For the same reasons that we are con-
cerned about the possible implemen-
tation of the revised and reinterpreted
Broader Impacts Criterion, we are also
very concerned with the novelty re-
quirement for CE21 BP proposals. We
propose that broadening participation
activities be examined through a lens
for impact, not just novelty. Finding
more of a balance between innovation
and implementation in the funding of
broadening participation activities will
improve our collective progress toward
a more diverse, competitive workforce.
1. DuBow, W. nCWIt scorecard: a report on the status
of women in information technology. nCWIt, Boulder,
2. lacey, t.a. and Wright, B. occupational employment
projections to 2018. Monthly Labor Review (nov. 2009,
revised Dec. 2010).
3. national science Board. national science foundation’s
Merit review Criteria: review and revisions. nsB/
Mr- 11-22, 2011.
4. u.s. Code, title 42, Chapter 16. national science
5. Zweben, s. Computing degree and enrollment trends
from the 2010–2011 Cra taulbee survey. Computing
research association, 2011.
Richard E. Ladner ( firstname.lastname@example.org) is Boeing
professor in Computer science and engineering at the
university of Washington. he is principal Investigator for
accessComputing, an nsf-funded alliance with the goal
of increasing the success and number of students with
disabilities in computing fields.
Elizabeth Litzler ( email@example.com) is Director
for research at the Center for Workforce Development
at the university of Washington. she leads research and
evaluation projects to improve diversity in science and
Copyright held by author.