Building a culture of computing in the sciences using images as data within a community of practice
The digital imaging and vision applications in science (DIVAS) program was built to improve the computational self-efficacy and skill of first- and second-year college students majoring in biological and chemical sciences. Our three-year pilot study showed that the program could be successful in both fronts. The scholars, faculty, and staff who participated formed a community of practice that became the heart of the DIVAS program. Through this community, we expanded access to the image processing workshop in collaboration with The Carpentries, supported faculty and secondary educators in developing computing modules for their classrooms, and created and staffed a writing center for computing on the host campus. Overall, the DIVAS program has sparked a local computing culture. DIVAS interventions and resources are freely available for adoption by other institutions. We hope to grow the community in a way that builds student access and opportunities and supports educators in the process.