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Arizona State University's Bioengineering First Year Student Workshop Series: Fostering Community

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2002 Annual Conference


Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002



Conference Session

ASEE Multimedia Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.225.1 - 7.225.4



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Paper Authors

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Jessica Mitchell

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James Sweeney

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Kristine Csavina

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Main Menu Session 2793

Arizona State University’s Bioengineering First-Year Student Workshop

Jessica Mitchell, M.Ed., Kristine R. Csavina, B.M.E.E., James D. Sweeney, Ph.D. Department of Bioengineering, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287-9709


The foundation of Arizona State University’s Bioengineering First-Year Student Workshop Series is to enhance the first-year experience by 1) fostering a community of peers and a connection with faculty; and 2) providing an overview of and initial connection to the bioengineering field. The workshop series aims to provide students with early involvement in bioengineering and to encourage an investment in their education. Additionally, workshops are an effort to help students relate first-year coursework to a broader overall goal of future courses and potential career paths. Themes of workshop modules, scheduled to meet every other week, include 1) a first overview of bioengineering at ASU including hands-on labs and faculty lab tours, 2) an exploration of education and career paths for bioengineers, 3) and an overview of various opportunities available to them within the Department of Bioengineering. Topics may be modified according to findings from surveys administered in the semester prior to the workshop series. Assessments will be conducted both pre and post workshop to determine whether the learning objectives were met. This series is designed to compliment existing departmental and college efforts in recruitment, retention and academic as well as career advising including an annual BME Day (Biomedical Engineering Day) open house, Summer Bridge Programs, freshman Orientation and mandatory advising, the Women in Science and Engineering program, the Minority Engineering Program, and BME 201 (Introduction to Bioengineering).


This workshop originated from consideration of existing and potential programs that promote the retention and development of students in their early years of undergraduate studies in engineering. Research indicates that the two primary factors that promote undergraduate student success are student-faculty interactions and student-peer interactions (Astin, 1993 as cited in Felder, 1993). At Arizona State University, as with many universities and colleges of engineering where freshmen enter with class schedules dominated by coursework in introductory engineering, calculus, chemistry, physics and English composition, Bioengineering students often do not have the desired level of opportunity to interact with bioengineering faculty or their bioengineering peers until they progress perhaps one year into their major. In the sophomore year at ASU, Bioengineering students typically enter their first major prefix course, BME 201 Introduction to Bioengineering. In this highly regarded course, students who have committed to the Bioengineering major are exposed to a full semester presentation of career paths and options in the discipline, as well as a survey of sub-specializations in the field including both hands-on labs and in-class exercises. A goal of the Bioengineering First-Year Workshop Series is then to provide a first year or entry year experience for students who have declared in the Bioengineering major or might be considering the major that bridges the time between entry into the university and arrival in the major coursework

“Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition CopyrightÓ 2002, American Society for Engineering Education”

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Mitchell, J., & Sweeney, J., & Csavina, K. (2002, June), Arizona State University's Bioengineering First Year Student Workshop Series: Fostering Community Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--10881

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