The PINC program offers CS classes to Biology and Biochemistry students. When we started PINC, we believed that offering classes (or sections of classes) specifically for Biology and Biochemistry students, would attract more women and students from underrepresented minorities to CS classes. The PINC students are supported by mentors who meet with small groups of students every week. We hoped that this additional support would help students feel comfortable in the CS classes and lead to high persistence from one class to the next. In the past winter break, we decided to take some time to crunch the numbers. The Office of Institutional Research helped us with this analysis.
- More than 70% of PINC students identify as female, as opposed to 19% among CS Majors, which is an increase of almost three-fold (290%).
- We find that over half of the PINC students in the first three semesters of the program identify as Black or Latino, whereas just over one quarter of students in the CS major identify as Black or Latino. The fraction of Black and Latino students in the PINC program is 93% higher than the the fraction of Black and Latino students in the CS major (51% vs 26%).
- Although the PINC program is still small, the number of Bio Majors who are enrolled in a CS class has grown since the fall of 2016 when we started the PINC program.
- Bio Majors who take a CS class (out of interest or to fulfill a requirement), usually don’t come back to the CS department to take a second CS class (19% does come back for a second CS class). Among the PINC students in the first two cohorts, 65% came back to take a second class, which is a 250% increase.