Collaborative Research: IUSE-EHR: Cultivating Inclusive Identities of Engineers and Computer Scientists: Expanding Efforts to Infuse Inclusive Excellence in Undergraduate Curricula Grant uri icon


  • This project aims to develop inclusive professional identities among engineering and computer science students through the process of redesigning undergraduate curricula. Inclusive professional identities are defined here as engineering and computer science students with: (a) the necessary technical knowledge, skills, and abilities to work in their chosen field, (b) an appreciation for how all kinds of diversity strengthen engineering and computer science as disciplines, and (c) knowledge of how to act in inclusive ways and create inclusive environments within their field. This project builds on a prior exploratory IUSE grant to develop, implement, and assess curricula for first-year engineering courses designed to help beginning engineering students identify with an inclusive vision of the engineering profession. The first objective is to transfer the first-year curricula to three other universities with different institutional characteristics and extend this curricula from engineering into computer science. Throughout this process, the pathways and barriers to successful transfer and adoption of this curricula will be studied. The second objective is to expand efforts into the second and third year courses in engineering and computer science in ways that sustain student engagement with diversity and inclusion. The project will develop and assess (a) discipline- and course-specific diversity activities (in particular, case studies from the engineering and computer science profession), and (b) training for graduate teaching assistants and faculty to facilitate effective and inclusive teams. The third objective is to measure both the short term and long term impact of the diversity and inclusion activities on the development of inclusive professional identities in students. The intellectual merit of this project lies in its transformative approach toward changing engineering and computer science collegiate cultures. This work complements initiatives that support historically underrepresented populations: rather than focusing exclusively on members of underrepresented groups, the focus is on preparing all students to work in diverse environments and to leverage inclusive behaviors that will support retention of students in STEM from all backgrounds, underrepresented and majority alike. The broader impact of this project allows for development and distribution of curricula that will prepare all STEM students to enact inclusive professional behaviors. Creating inclusive climates in collegiate STEM departments contributes to broadening participation by ensuring that students from underrepresented groups experience equitable learning environments where they can participate fully in STEM learning. STEM professionals who are prepared to infuse diverse perspectives in their everyday practices and create inclusive work environments carry great potential to make robust contributions for the public good of society.

date/time interval

  • 2019 - 2022