Woodfield’s (2014) report Undergraduate retention and attainment across the disciplines reviewed the performance – in terms of attainment and retention across HE in general, and with a breakdown by disciplines. That report also considered a range of factors that demonstrated differences between disciplines. Woodfield’s report considered data for the 2010-11 cohort. Following from that work, this report is one of a family that focuses on the general issues raised there, and how they play out in relation to the specific discipline of Computer Science.
This report begins by considering those aspects that reflect discipline specific characteristics; examples here are the nature of the content, and of the student and staff communities. The chief issues considered are:
- the popularity of Computer Science as a choice of degree course;
- the perceived gender imbalance within Computer Science in the UK;
- the relatively low level of retention compared to other disciplines;
- the relatively low level of achievement in terms of degree classification;
- the proportion of mature and Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) students;
- the broader issue of achievement, considering the destinations of graduates.