Storytelling, Coding, and Identity: Developing Culturally Relevant Computing Courses for Native Students
Wednesday, September 16, 2020 — 12:30PM - 1:15PM
In order to address the longstanding effects of colonization, forced removal and assimilation, and systemic poverty affecting Native American communities in the United States and build new economic pathways, this panel will discuss a project to develop and implement a sequence of 3 project-based, culturally relevant computing courses, including Advanced Placement Computer Science Principle (AP CSP) and Advanced Placement Computer Science A (AP CS A), to prepare Native American students to participate in computing college and career opportunities. The Women of Color in Computing Collaborative (WOCCC), in partnership with the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES), has built upon an existing culturally responsive, project-based CS course currently implemented in two schools of the Navajo Nation (Chinle High School, Greyhills Academy High School, both in Arizona) to develop a full, college preparatory computer science sequence for Native-serving high schools. Furthermore, in examining the additional barriers that are faced by students of color with marginalized gender and sexual orientation identities, these courses have been developed to engage, motivate, and inspire Native American girls and LGBTQ+/Two-Spirit students to pursue computer science education and careers. Panelists will discuss the ways in which this project centers the leadership, vision, goals for self-determination, and traditional values of its partner Native American tribes and communities as well as their experiences in working with Native students, families, cultural experts, and communities as part of this project.