Identifying Opportunities and Potential Roadblocks for CSEd Professionals

Mendez, A., Tshukudu, E., Moreira, C., Naowaprateep, W., Peterfreund, A. and Johnston, B. (2021) Identifying Opportunities and Potential Roadblocks for CSEd Professionals. In: 17th ACM Conference on International Computing Education Research (ICER 2021), 16-19 Aug 2021, pp. 433-434. ISBN 9781450383264 (doi: 10.1145/3446871.3469789)

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The recent growth of computing education globally has resulted in a growing number of Computer Science Education (CSEd) graduate students. To support and make a global impact in computing education, there is a need for these graduates to be in a diversity of careers/roles both within and beyond academia. Currently pursuing a CSEd PhD requires a leap of faith that one can overcome issues not only associated with pioneering a new discipline within the host institution but also is often undertaken without knowing what career opportunities will be available upon graduation. Surveys conducted in Spring 2020 and 2021 with graduate students and advisors document these challenges [3]. Following these surveys, the project team identified the need to support the growth of research in CS Education. By investigating career pathways for CSEd Graduate students, the need to expand the endeavor and discover what the future holds for CSEdGrad was made clear. This project also seeks to connect with CSEd graduates internationally. The current team leading this initiative comes from the United States, the Caribbean (Puerto Rico), Brazil, Thailand, and UK (via Botswana). Among the research initiatives that the team has undertaken is identifying non-academic career opportunities (jobs, conferences, publication opportunities, and fellowships) for CSEd graduate students. While seeking to promote and share international opportunities in non-academic settings, the researchers are faced with defining CSEd Research, the opportunities that CSEd graduate students can pursue, and how these vary across countries and regions. To gain preliminary insights into existing career opportunities, the team explored five countries (USA, UK, Brazil, Puerto Rico, and Thailand) for four months using online research methods. The data collected included country, type of organization, job description, and job qualification. This data was imported into Excel for detailed analysis. Content analysis was used to code collected data into career and organization categories systematically. Initial categories were generated deductively with the guideline from Amy Ko’s blog [1] on career paths, and new categories evolved as well. These categories were then merged and collapsed through an iterative process that led to developing a CSEd career path mind-map (See figure 1). In total, 83 jobs from 35 different non-academic organizations were reported. Furthermore, 15 career path categories and 6 organization categories emerged from these findings. Among the emerging themes that the team has found are limited opportunities within the developing countries, the varying definitions, and broad requirements for CSEd professions, and the dominant and leading role of the United States and the United Kingdom in CSEd. The research team understands that this can be an opportunity to create and pave the way to new opportunities within the field [2]. This poster seeks to generate a discussion within the ICER community about the progress of the team’s findings, and what the future holds for CSEd Graduate students.

Item Type:Conference Proceedings
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Tshukudu, Ethel
Authors: Mendez, A., Tshukudu, E., Moreira, C., Naowaprateep, W., Peterfreund, A., and Johnston, B.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Computing Science
Journal Name:Proceedings of the 17th ACM Conference on International Computing Education Research

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