˲ Through capacity-building workshops, conferences, and professional
development, Alliances inspire faculty,
teachers, and other professionals to
develop collaborations and change the
climate in computer science education.
˲ Organizations across the computing education spectrum benefit from
Alliances’ resources, finding new approaches to teaching and learning, recruiting and retaining students, and developing public/private partnerships.
˲Alliances are well positioned to
serve as national resources, disseminating promising practices, scaling
tested models, and supporting national and regional efforts to broaden
participation. In this capacity, they
disseminate new knowledge and research about broadening participation
in computing through publications,
presentations, conferences, and Web-based dissemination strategies.
˲ Evaluation at both the Alliance and
the program level is critical for documenting Alliances’ influence and outcomes.
However, more and stronger data are
needed to document the influence of the
Alliances (individually and collectively) on
broadening participation in computing.
The evaluation team discovered that
BPC Alliances employ many different
approaches, influencing people, organizations, infrastructure and ultimately
the landscape of the field, demonstrating that there is no “one right way” to
broaden participation in computing.
Together, the Alliances for Broadening
Participation in Computing are building
a more equitable ecosystem for computer science education in the U.S.
1. Chubin, D. E. and Johnson, R. Y. A program greater
than the sum of its parts: The BPC Alliances.
Commun. ACM 54, 3 (Mar. 2011), 35–37; DOI:
2. White House Office of Science and Technology Policy
(Feb. 2016); www.whitehouse.gov/ostp
Leslie Goodyear ( email@example.com) is Principal
Research Scientist at Education Development Center
(EDC, Inc.). Her work includes multiple evaluations
of NSF programs and projects focused on broadening
participation in S TEM.
Gary Silverstein ( SILVERG1@westat.com) is an
Associate Director at Westat, Inc. His work focuses on
project monitoring and program evaluation of efforts to
enhance educational opportunities at the K– 20 levels.
Linda P. Thurston ( firstname.lastname@example.org) is professor of Special
Education, Counseling, and Student Affairs in the College
of Education at Kansas State University. She serves as
Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies, is
the Lydia E. Skeen Chair in Education, and is a co-principal
investigator of the Kansas LSAMP program.
Copyright held by authors.
chusetts at Amherst; http://expanding-
˲Institute for African-American
Mentoring in Computing Sciences
(iAAMCS), Clemson University; http://
˲ Into the Loop (ITL), University of
California Los Angeles; http://idea.
˲ National Center for Women and
Information Technology (NCWIT),
University of Colorado at Boulder;
˲ STARS Computing Corps (STARS),
University of North Carolina at Charlotte; http://starscomputingcorps.org/
The programs and resources offered
by these Alliances have leveraged public and private partnerships to target
computing education in K– 20 grade
levels, preparing diverse students for
careers in computing and computer
science. These activities built a foundational wealth of knowledge and practices for the field of computing education research and diversity education
research. The foci for these Alliances
are seen in the figure here.
Documenting and assessing the as-
sociations, relationships, outcomes,
and influence among Alliances and
with their partners was a significant
undertaking because of the reach and
depth of the Alliances’ partnerships. In
addition, the Alliances target different
but overlapping audiences; implement
a variety of strategies and activities; de-
velop multiple types of resources and
products; and partner with diverse orga-
nizations to reach their outcomes and
objectives. In consideration of these
challenges, the evaluation team utilized
a multiple-method case study approach
to answer a variety of evaluation ques-
tions related to the Alliances’ influence
on students, faculty, organizations and
the infrastructure of computing educa-
tion and efforts to broaden participa-
tion. This column describes a small part
of the findings of the evaluation.
The evaluation team described the
program accomplishments in two stages. The first five years of the Alliances
were spent developing and testing
models, such as courses, mentoring,
service learning, workshops, summer
programs, fellowships, webinars, and
competitions. The second five years of
the program focused more on leveraging knowledge and serving as national
resources. Examples of activities during these years are influencing policies,
serving as national resources, fostering
research, facilitating networks of professionals and supporting a national
A cross-case analysis showed several
findings related to the accomplishments and reach of the Alliances.
˲ Alliance partnerships and activities reached every state in the U.S.
˲Alliances use diverse strategies
to expose students to computing concepts and careers, influencing their
interest and confidence in pursuing
Foci of Eight Broadening Participation in Computing Alliances
Supporting students with disabilities to pursue
degrees in computing fields
Into the Loop
Enhancing high school students’ computer
science learning through implementation and
dissemination of equity-focused curricula and
Computing Alliance of Hispanic-Serving
Leveraging member institutions to increase the
number of Hispanic students who complete
degrees in computing
Institute for African-American Mentoring in
Addressing the shortage of African Americans
pursuing Ph.D.’s and research careers in
Sustainable Diversity in the Computing
Research Pipeline Increasing the participation
of women and underrepresented minorities in
computing research careers
National Center for Women & Information
Technology (NC WI T)
Bringing together universities, non-profits, and for-profit organizations to advance women’s and girls’
participation in computer science
Education Pathways (ECEP)
Increasing the number and diversity of students
completing computing degrees by supporting
state-level computing education policy change
Students in Technology, Academia, Research,
and Service Alliance (STARS)
Fostering a community of practice for students
through service learning and building computing
education capacity in member institutions