The number of young people selecting a university Information Technology (IT) course is low and has been declining alarmingly in the last few years. While young women appear to be rejecting the discipline at a greater rate than young men, the declining popularity of IT university courses is a worrying trend that is affecting the culture of the discipline and the industry nationally and internationally. The discourse of the discipline is often focused on curriculum content and industry applications with little or no attention to the type of student who is taking our courses. This paper presents senior secondary school and university enrolment statistics that emphasise a steady decline in popularity of IT courses since 2000. Results of a quantitative survey of over 700 undergraduates are presented to provide a lens into the current student experiences in IT in secondary school, the home and at university. Factors underpinning the declining popularity of the discipline as a course and career option are explored and some thoughts on the future of the discipline are offered.
Lang, Catherine; McKay, Judy; and Lewis, Sue, "Declining popularity increases lack of diversity: extending the discourse of the discipline" (2006). ACIS 2006 Proceedings. Paper 24.