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Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering
SJR: 0.504 SNIP: 0.671 CiteScore™: 1.65

ISSN Print: 1072-8325
ISSN Online: 1940-431X

Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering

DOI: 10.1615/JWomenMinorScienEng.v10.i1.20
16 pages

THE NEW ARRIVAL MINORITY: PERCEPTIONS OF THEIR FIRST-YEAR TERTIARY PROGRAMMING LEARNING ENVIRONMENT

Barbara J. Crump
Massey University, Private Box 756, Wellington, New Zealand

ABSTRACT

“New arrivals”—immigrant and international students who leave their home countries and study abroad—are a minority subgroup in their learning environments, coping with their border crossings into new cultures and languages. Many of these students enroll in tertiary computing programs in which the culture has been found to be alienating for women, another minority subgroup. This article reports the results of semistructured interviews that examined how new-arrival tertiary students studying 1st-year programming perceived their computing learning environments. The study was conducted at three tertiary institutions in Wellington, New Zealand. It was found that the majority of students perceived their learning milieus positively and that maturity and experience were positive mitigating factors on the culture of the computing learning environment. However, for the few younger students who did not enjoy the same personalization and had difficulties with the English language and culture, there are implications for the faculty and administrative staff members of institutions interested in providing positive learning experiences for new arrivals.


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