3C: Cultural Competence in Computing

3C Fellows FAQ

Is the program only for those in computing disciplines??

No. While it was originally designed for computing faculty (because of the obvious issues in the field), we quickly realized that the topics covered are applicable to other science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) disciplines. Nothing covered in this program is computing specific, so it is easy for other disciplines to participate and contribute.

How long is the program?

Full participation in the program spans two academic years per cohort. For year 1, the program spans the entire academic year in two parts. First, participants are expected to complete all required material in the prep packet (self-paced) from June-January. Periodic check-ins are submitted to ensure participants are completing this necessary work. The formal, bi-monthly PD sessions are scheduled from Feb-June (Saturdays 12-2pm EST). See the program timeline for a complete list of dates. Please note that we have already tried to work around special holidays and other conferences with 2024 dates. Between sessions, participants will have pre-review material specific to the upcoming session for review. For year 2, participants will be expected to implement their deliverable no later than the spring 2025 semester and participate in two follow-up sessions (spring 2025).

Session Schedule (Cohort 4)

  • February 3, 17
  • March 9, 23
  • April 13, 27
  • May 4, 18
  • June 8, 22
  • Follow-up Sessions: TBD, spring 2025

How much time can I expect to dedicate to participation in the spring?

We cannot guarantee a specific amount of time required per week for participation, as it will vary by individual. Although the amount of time spent will vary by individual schedules, obligations, and commitments, previous participants reported an estimated average of 1-3 hours per week completing the prep packet in preparation for the bi-monthly PD sessions in year 1.

I can’t participate for the full time period. Can I participate for a specific window of time?

As we’ve seen in this country, a partial commitment to issues that center identity, equity, inclusion, and social justice don’t work when they are only done when it is convenient for participants. Successful completion requires being intentional and committed. The program was carefully designed to respect participants’ time, while providing a solid foundation to build upon and a community of practice that can be leveraged during the program and beyond. This requires full participation (both the PD sessions as well as external activities). While we understand that extenuating circumstances happen, the expectation is that all participants who agree to participate are committing to doing the work. NOTE: Any participant missing more than 20% of a session (i.e., 24 minutes for a two-hour session and 12 minutes for a one-hour session) is marked absent.Participants are only allowed to miss one (1) session (a session absence form is available in advance of all sessions). Sessions are recorded and available for participants to review. Those missing two (2) sessions will be removed from the program. Given the limited number of spots available for participants and overwhelming interest, we ask that you please plan to dedicate this time (as outlined in the schedule) or reapply for a future cohort when the time permits.

What if I have to miss a session?

Attendance for all 12 (10 in year 1 and two in year 2) is mandatory. However, we recognize that things happen. All participants are allowed to miss one session, with the expectation that they will immediately review the recording and engage with their breakout group. NOTE: Any participant missing more than 20% of a session (i.e., 24 minutes for a two-hour session and 12 minutes for a one-hour session) is marked absent. Participants who need to miss a session are expected to complete the session absence form, which helps us identify those who need to miss vs. those who no longer wish to participate.

What is the prep packet?

A curated list of books, videos, and podcast episodes that ensures all participants begin the formal sessions in February with a baseline understanding of identity-related topics.

Do I have to purchase all of the books in the prep packet?

We do not provide copies of any books in the prep packet. However, if you do not want to purchase your own copies, your institution’s or local public library may provide copies of these books for free (audiobook, digital, or print form). We note that it is a good idea to obtain your own personal copies (in whatever form), as you may include these (and more) in your year 2 project. More importantly, they are good resources to have. Some departments in prior cohorts purchased copies for participants. You are encouraged to check with department leadership to explore this possibility.

Where can I get the prep packet?

Prep packets are made available via Microsoft Teams upon confirmation of participation (May deadline). We provide these in a timely manner to ensure participants have time between the summer and February to complete all material.

Will we have to participate in person?

The program is fully virtual. Participants will also have a dedicated Microsoft Teams channel for sharing resources and communicating with fellow cohort members.

I have never used Microsoft Teams before. How do I navigate it?

Teams combines the best of Slack, Zoom, and Explorer/Finder in one app. This 10-min tutorial provides a brief introduction to Teams and its functionality. We recommendations using the desktop app (discussed in the video).

Can I still participate if I’m not faculty?

While the program was designed for postsecondary faculty, staff, and graduate students (i.e., future faculty), those in other educational positions who commit to the program are welcome to apply (including those in formal/informal K-12 education spaces). Note that participants may not include K-12 students, undergraduates, or industry representatives.

Can I still participate if I don’t have any teammates?

Yes. The encouragement to participate in teams is so that no one person is responsible for the institutional knowledge or deliverable development at your current institution.

Can my team include people from a different organization than mine?

Yes. There are Fellows who work across institutions as a team to develop/lead one joint deliverable. .

Can more than two participants from an institution/organization participate?

Absolutely! The more participants from one institution/organization, the better! Please ensure that the person submitting the application includes all partner names/emails,to ensure they receive prep packets and future correspondence, if selected.

If I am applying with a partner/team, does everyone have to complete the application?

The application allows the first team member to list all other participants, so only one submission is required. Please make sure that whoever submits the application includes all team members. Should someone be interested after submission of a team application, then they should submit a separate application by the deadline.

Is this program open to participants at institutions outside the U.S.?

Absolutely! We have several Fellows from outside of the U.S.

Is this program only for faculty from specific types of universities?

No. There is significant value in computing faculty from ALL types of institutions bringing these projects to their students. Faculty from all institutions are strongly encouraged to apply.

How should we prepare for this program?

Completion of the prep packet and a willingness to being "stretched" beyond your comfort zone is a sufficient foundation and maximizes the time spent in professional development (PD) sessions.

Can I submit an application after the posted deadline?

We will not accept applications after the posted deadline. This also applies to participants interested in joining an accepted team. Please take time to discuss within your organization before submission.

What if we are not accepted?

To ensure participants are able to effectively engage throughout the program, we have a limited capacity of participants. Those selected for the next cohort have a small window to confirm participation. Other participants will be waitlisted and notified, should any slots becoming available. We aim to do this in a timely fashion, to allow for the extended time in the summer to begin the prep packet. In the event that you or your team are not selected for this cohort, then we encourage you to please apply for the next one.

If anyone from my organization was accepted, can I still apply late to be a part of their team?

We will not consider new applicants after the submission deadline. Please ensure that you apply before the deadline for consideration.

What if I haven’t completed all of the required materials before the start date?

We curated a list of material that every participant should complete before attempting implementing a project dedicated to identity in computing. This list leverages provides context for topics that we are not usually taught in computing programs. As such, it is extremely important that participants follow the requirements in the prep packet as much as possible. These provide, at minimum, a common foundation for all participants to begin(ensuring that we maximize your time in the program). We provide check-in points throughout the fall semester in preparation for the spring PD sessions. Our goal is that you complete as much of the prep packet prior to beginning the program. Solving the systemic issues in computing require heavy lifting and a commitment to this work. As such, we ask that your commitment begins with the material provided. Participants are encouraged to leverage audiobook format as well if physical copies consume more time.

What can we expect during this program?

A great and impactful experience! This is not a DEI workshop; expect to be uncomfortable while (un)learning. In addition to the resource list provided in the prep packet, you can expect presentations and discussions with leading experts in social science/humanities as well as computing education, intentional discussions around topics of identity, oppression, discrimination, privilege, and how these not only impact computing environments, but also the technologies that are created. By the end of the program, participants can expect to have increased understanding, comfort discussing/developing/leading deliverables, and a community of peers to collaborate with throughout the program and beyond!

Do I have to create/teach a course related to these topics at my institution/organization if I participate?

The expectation is to develop an identity-inclusive deliverable related to these topics at your organization. Every participant is not an educator, and every educator may not choose or be able to create a course. If you are a graduate student/postdoc, then this may be a proposed deliverable for your current or future organization (upon entering a professional position). This deliverable can take several different forms beyond a course (which is also why we encourage team participation). Regardless of what is chosen, all participants are expected to implement their deliverable for the first time no later than the spring 2024 semester.

Do participants receive a stipend?


Is there a cost for participation?

There is no cost to participate other than the investment of time (and any books purchased). We note that some departments have paid for participant books and encourage you to contact leadership to see if this is an option. We also strongly suggest checking any libraries for which you have access.

Will I get a certificate of completion for the program?

Yes, all fellows receive an electronic copy of a certificate of completion of the program upon full completion of the program (end of Y2 activities).