My first in-person conference experience: ICER 2022
Upon entering my fourth and final year of my PhD studies, I finally attended and presented at my first in-person conference at the International Computing Education Research (ICER) conference in Lugano, Switzerland. During my PhD studies, I have presented at three virtual conferences but have never presented or attended an in-person conference due to COVID.
Me and my mentor, Lexi Lishinski, presented our (with Joshua Rosenberg) paper which was accepted and published in the ICER conference proceedings: Self-efficacy, Interest, and Belongingness – URM Students’ Momentary Experiences in CS. Normally I consider myself a good presenter, but during our presentation I realized that I have never presented in front of a large in-person audience. Our presentation went very well and I am fortunate to have that experience before graduating.
Overall, my first in-person conference experience was enriching and something I know I would not have been able to appreciate or receive if it was held strictly online. I met and made connections with other computer science education, educational psychology, and data science scholars and practitioners from around the world.
Admittedly, while listening to other paper and poster presentations, there were moments where I felt out of place, given that computer science education is not my specific area of study. However, I continually found myself thinking about and asking questions regarding the methodology utilized by the presenters. While specific topics within the CSE field were foreign to me, I took comfort in knowing that I have been trained as a decent methodologist as I continued to focus on the methods in each of the studies.
Having the opportunity to connect with other scholars and practitioners, present at my first in-person conference, and learn about other topics and methods used in the CSE field, ICER 2022 was a fantastic experience to kick-off my final year of studies.