Turing Culture: Developing Empathetic Programmers
Our mission is to unlock human potential by training a diverse, inclusive student body to succeed in high-fulfillment technical careers.
- Interpersonal skills (including empathy) have a direct, significant impact on your professional success.
- Empathy is a foundational interpersonal skill. Other skills, such as collaboration, communication, compromise all hinge on your ability to demonstrate empathy.
- Interpersonal skills, including empathy, can be developed and improved.
- Turing’s mission (cited above) demands that we support students development of technical and interpersonal skills.
Read two of the following articles/videos (we recommend all of them!) and reflect on these questions: why are we talking about empathy at a software development school? how can you develop the “skill” of empathy? and why should you care?
- “Why is Empathy Important for Design”
- “The Surprising (Nontechnical) Skill You Need to Succeed in Tech”, The Muse
- “Why Aren’t We More Compassionate?”, TED Talk (Daniel Goleman)
- “Can you teach people to have empathy?”, BBC (Jun 29, 2015)
- “Three Kinds of Empathy”, Daniel Goleman
- “The Importance of Empathy in Our Services-Centric, People-Oriented Economy”, Wall Street Journal Blog (Oct 9, 2015)
After reading the articles above, create a gist on Github and reflect (4-6 sentences) on the following prompts.
- What role does empathy play in your life and how has it helped you?
- How does empathy help you build better software?
- Why is empathy important for working on a team?
- Describe a situation in which your ability to empathize with a colleague or teammate was helpful.
- When do you find it most difficult to be empathetic in professional settings? How can you improve your skills when faced with these scenarios?