Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts in Computer Science


Computer Science and Computer Engineering


Gauch, Susan

Committee Member/Reader

Patitz, Matthew

Committee Member/Second Reader

Streeter, Lora


The field of computing as we know it today exists because of the contributions of numerous female mathematicians, computer scientists, and programmers. While working with hardware was viewed as “a man’s job” during the mid-20th century, computing and programming was viewed as a noble and high-paying field for women to occupy. However, as time has progressed, the U.S. has seen a decrease in the number of women pursuing computer science. The idea that computing is a masculine discipline is common in the U.S. today for reasons such as male-centered marketing of electronics and gadgets, an inaccurate representation of what it means to be a “programmer” in media, and the fact that math confidence has been found to be lower in young girls compared to their male counterparts. Encouraging gender minorities to pursue computing is a complex task, and there are many proposed solutions. Many of these plans focus on changing attributes of those in the minority instead of working with the dominant group.

As there are trends in the way people of a certain gender interact with technology, there are trends in the barriers some users may face when interacting with software products. Software developers can use existing frameworks such as GenderMag to investigate gender accessibility for specific functions and workflows. Improving gender accessibility is not only useful from a software design standpoint, but it can be positioned as a useful tool to increase the presence of gender minorities in computing. This project discusses the connection between gender and computing culture and also provides an application of the core principles of the GenderMag framework to gain insights on potential pain points of a software product with respect to gender.


gender, software, development, sex, computer, science, computing