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The Stereotypes, Identity and Belonging Lab at the University of Washington is now a member of the blogging community! We will be using Decoded as a forum for disseminating our research on women and computer science and discussing current issues related to the field of computer science including: women's involvement and how computer science is changing the way we live. We would love to hear your thoughts and comments on our posts.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Young Girls and Computer Science

Dot Diva, an exciting new national initiative aimed at high school girls, is on a mission to create a positive new image for computer science.  The initiative is striving to change perceptions of the field, emphasizing the positive impact that can be made on the world through computer science.  One look at the website, www.dotdiva.org, and it is clear that Dot Diva is working hard to create a fresh image for computer science. 

A national survey conducted by Dot Diva revealed high school girls perceptions of computing;  “as ‘boring’ and ‘hard,’ but they believe it fails to deliver two crucial benefits: ‘working with others’ and ‘making a difference in other people's lives’." This perception of computer science is what has inspired this initiative to work on changing this image.  “Our ultimate goal is to transform this negative perception.”   Dot Diva is working toward this goal by stressing the diversity of opportunities in computer science, the power to make a difference in the world, and the high salary and demand in the field. 

As Dot Diva’s mission statement says, “We’re young women with the power and passion to make a difference.  We believe in the potential of computing to build a better world.”  By reaching out to young women across the country the initiative is spreading its passion for computer science.  Check out Dot Diva’s website to see for yourself how they are putting their passion to work, how to join the Dot Diva community, and be sure not to miss the webisode featuring two young talented female computer scientists.  Let us know what you think about this exiting new initiative!

Dot Diva

Posted by: Ben


  1. This makes me wonder whether young men already believe in, "the potential of computing to build a better world"? If so, maybe we should find out how/why they were able to see it that way in the first place.

    Alternatively, it could be that men don't place making the world a better place high on their list of priorities. (I hope that is not the case though!)

  2. I think this is a great idea! I wish I had resources like this when I was in high school. It's giving computer science a whole new diverse image. It's really inspiring. :)