Towards a Data-Driven Employer-Academia Partnership for Continual Computing Curricular Change

There is a widening gap between employer-perceived needs for workplace-readiness and academic preparation of computing graduates. To close the gap, many major computing employers — including Amazon, Google, and Microsoft — have entered the education space to offer certificates that are touted to substitute for traditional undergraduate degrees. Simply put, universities are missing the mark, and industry is stepping in to produce its own candidates for hiring.

To fix this broken system, ABET is participating with a team from eight universities to develop evidence-based practices that improve educational processes, computing curricula and learning experiences to be competency-based and aligned with employers’ expectations for new hires.
We will present our proposed approach to this problem which includes: development of a rigorous, sustainable process for gathering employer needs, a change management process to help programs respond to the identified needs, piloting the process at partnering institutions, and packaging the approach for widespread dissemination.