Born to Code

Portrayal of Computer Scientists as Geniuses.

8 mins
What is it about?



Medicine and Health

The world of pSTEM (physical sciences, technology, engineering, and mathematics) is a crucial one, and researchers and policymakers are looking to ignite students' passion for these fields. In particular, computer science is under the spotlight as it promises some of the most lucrative and in-demand jobs. However, despite its alluring prospects, enrollment in pSTEM classes, especially by women and marginalized groups, is alarmingly low.

To tackle this issue, a recent study delved into the impact of stereotypical portrayals of computer scientists in the media. These portrayals often depict computer scientists as nerdy, white men who are geniuses - a representation that can deter students from pursuing careers in the field. The study aimed to test if presenting computer scientists as everyday people who have succeeded through hard work, instead of just sheer brilliance, could inspire students to develop a growth mindset and see success as attainable through effort.