The Impact of the Exploring Computer Science Instructional Model in Chicago Public Schools

As part of the Taste of Computing project, the Exploring Computer Science (ECS) instructional model has been expanded to many high schools in the Chicago Public Schools system. We report on initial outcomes showing that students value the ECS course experience, resulting in increased awareness of and interest in the field of computer science. We compare these results by race and gender. The data provide a good basis for exploring the impact of meaningful computer science instruction on students from groups underrepresented in computing; of several hundred students surveyed, nearly half were female, and over half were Hispanic or African-American.