Growing Computer Science Literacy via Informal Learning Communities among Incarcerated and Formerly Incarcerated Men and Women

Date: 
Saturday, September 1, 2018 to Monday, August 31, 2020
Resource Type:
Project Descriptions
Environment Type: 
Public Programs, Community Outreach Programs
Audience: 
Adults | Museum/ISE Professionals
Discipline: 
Computing and information science
Organization:
Bennington College, Bard College
Description: 

As part of its overall strategy to enhance learning in informal environments, the Advancing Informal STEM Learning (AISL) program funds innovative research, approaches, and resources for use in a variety of settings. This Pilots and Feasibility Studies project will design and study computer science education programs in three New York State prisons and cutting-edge computer science learning spaces in New York City and Bennington, VT for recently released men and women. These two sites of investment will be designed and operated with the goals of bridging informal STEM education inside the prison and post-release. The project aims to help incarcerated and formerly incarcerated men and women gain hands-on experience and technical fluency in computer science. The project will also help people build effective pathways that link training and informal learning communities in prison to professional and educational success after prison.

The research will examine how informal STEM learning can 1) provide incarcerated and post-incarceration populations more effective pathways into computer science and technology professions, and 2) help revitalize neighborhoods struggling with high rates of incarceration and high rates of adults under correctional supervision. Results will be shared among the STEM learning community and prison educators through existing networks, scholarly and journalistic publications, and conferences. As a pilot program, this project aims to develop a comprehensive, rigorous, and transferable model that may be used as a resource in other prison education programs as well as in rural and urban communities across the United States seeking to address economic and educational inequalities of post-incarceration life.

This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

Funder(s): 
NSF
Funding Program: 
AISL
Award Number: 
1811263
Funding Amount: 
$150,990.00
Funder(s): 
NSF
Funding Program: 
AISL
Award Number: 
1811430
Funding Amount: 
$140,610.00

Team Members

Andrew CenciniAndrew CenciniPrincipal Investigator
David BondDavid BondCo-Principal Investigator
Jed TuckerJed TuckerPrincipal Investigator

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