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An Analysis of Freshman Engineering Student Attitudes

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Conference

2018 FYEE Conference

Location

Glassboro, New Jersey

Publication Date

July 24, 2018

Start Date

July 24, 2018

End Date

July 26, 2018

Conference Session

Technical Session I

Tagged Topic

FYEE Conference Sessions

Page Count

6

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/31385

Download Count

4

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Paper Authors

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Aysa Galbraith University of Arkansas

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Dr. Aysa Galbraith is a Clinical Assistant Professor of First-Year Engineering Program at University of Arkansas. She received her PhD in Chemical Engineering from Chemical and Biomolecular Department at North Carolina State University in 2006. She is responsible from teaching Introduction to Engineering and Engineering Applications of Mathematics classes, developing course material, and advising freshman engineering students.

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Heath Aren Schluterman University of Arkansas

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Dr. Heath Schluterman is a Clinical Assistant Professor and the Associate Director of Academics for the Freshman Engineering Program at the University of Arkansas. Dr. Schluterman completed his B.S. and Ph.D in Chemical Engineering at the University of Arkansas.

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Leslie Bartsch Massey University of Arkansas

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Leslie Massey is an instructor in the First-Year Engineering Program at the University of Arkansas. She received her BS in Biological Engineering and MS in Environmental Engineering from the University of Arkansas. She previously served as a project manager at a water resources center, but returned to the University of Arkansas to teach general Introduction to Engineering and to coordinator for the First-Year Honors Innovation Experience.

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Brandon Crisel University of Arkansas

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I am a 9 year veteran instructor at the University of Arkansas. I have a background in Applied Math and Statistics and came to the Freshmen Engineering Program from the Math Department. I teach courses themed in Electronics, Robotics,and Structures for FEP.

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Abstract

An Analysis of Freshman Engineering Student Attitudes

The Freshman Engineering Program (FEP) in the College of Engineering (CoE) at the University of Arkansas was established in 2007 to improve the retention of first-year engineering students to the sophomore year and ultimately support the CoE long-term goal of increasing graduation rates. Since the establishment of FEP, the second-year retention rates for CoE has increased from 62% to 71%. Identifying the factors which influence retention and using the resultant information to improve the academic and student service support for freshman engineering students is critical to the continual success of our program. Towards this effort, we collect and analyze data in many areas.

This paper focuses on identifying attitudes of freshman students that come from varied backgrounds and preparation then determining the changes in those attitudes during their first semester. For this purpose, students in freshman engineering classes were given the Pittsburg Freshman Engineering Attitude Survey twice as an assignment during their first year; pre-survey at the beginning of fall semester and post-survey at the beginning of spring semester. Typical Freshman Engineering students, who are qualified to take Calculus I (on time) or Precalculus (one semester behind), enroll in Introduction to Engineering I in fall semester and Introduction to Engineering II in spring semester. Some of our students, who are qualified to take College Algebra (two semesters behind), enroll in Fundamentals of Success in Engineering Study in fall semester and move on to Introduction to Engineering I or II in spring semester. High-achieving honors students who are qualified to take Calculus II or beyond can enroll in Honors Research or Innovation Experience and Colloquium. The analysis of survey results showed that students’ perception of engineering, persistence in engineering and their desire to be involved in campus all increased from fall semester to spring semester. Our analysis for differences among the students enrolled in different types of freshman engineering classes revealed that while the confidence levels in science and math differ, the persistence in engineering, perception of engineering, study and social skills did not show significant difference between students of varied backgrounds.

Galbraith, A., & Schluterman, H. A., & Massey, L. B., & Crisel, B. (2018, July), An Analysis of Freshman Engineering Student Attitudes Paper presented at 2018 FYEE Conference, Glassboro, New Jersey. https://peer.asee.org/31385

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