Computing for the Social Good

Brief Description

Computing curricula, particularly the introductory sequence, often reinforce student misconceptions regarding the discipline. These curricula present the discipline, as expressed through motivational examples and programming projects, as either boring (e.g. duck counting, lemonade stands), lacking in seriousness (e.g. game programming), focused solely on commerce (business applications), or some mixture of the above. CS educational activities for the social good (CSG-Ed), is an umbrella term meant to incorporate any educational activity, from small to large, that endeavours to convey and reinforce computing's social relevance and potential for positive societal impact. There are many expected benefits to infusing computing curricula, particularly at the introductory level, with CSG-Ed activities. These include:

  • more accurately reflect the discipline's actual and potential contributions to all aspects of society;
  • potentially increase interest in computing, and in particular broaden participation of women and minorities in computing;
  • prepare computing graduates, even those bound for careers in industry, with a stronger ability to assess the societal impact of their work.

Team members

  1. Associate Professor Tony Clear
  2. Dr Jacqueline Whalley
  3. Dr Michael Goldweber, visiting fellow, Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, Xavier University, Cincinnati, USA


Support is being sought from Fulbright USA-New Zealand and other sources.


Project leaders – Associate Professor Tony Clear and Dr Jacqueline Whalley