Community College Students Struggle On The Way To Computer Science Degrees

CC’S GET DEGREES: “Community colleges are often overlooked in efforts to increase diversity at the postsecondary level,” says researchers behind Google’s latest report on computer science (CS) and college access. The study, which looks at two community colleges in California, comes as part of a series trying to change that trend by examining the pathways and experiences of underrepresented community college students working towards a bachelor’s degree CS. Through interviews with 24 currently-enrolled community college students, the report lists several key findings including how community college students struggle to navigate transfer prerequisites and “have limited knowledge of how CS is applied in professional settings.”

The qualitative assessment also points out two national stats: that 43 percent of U.S. community college students are nonwhite, and over half of American women who earn a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) degree began at a community college. For further reading, Google also released an additional 2016 study, A Longitudinal Analysis of Community College Pathways to Computer Science Bachelor’s Degrees, which looks nationally at community college students and what factors influence their likelihood of obtaining a bachelor’s degree in CS. 

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