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Assessing the GRIT of Incoming Engineering Students

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2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 14, 2015

Start Date

June 14, 2015

End Date

June 17, 2015





Conference Session

Women in Engineering Division Poster Session

Tagged Division

Women in Engineering

Tagged Topic


Page Count


Page Numbers

26.248.1 - 26.248.8



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Paper Authors


Laura Bottomley North Carolina State University

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Dr. Laura Bottomley, ASEE Fellow, is the Director of Women in Engineering and The Engineering Place for K-20 Outreach, as well as a Teaching Associate Professor in the Colleges of Engineering and Education at NC State University.
In 2009 Dr. Bottomley was selected for a Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics, Science and Engineering Mentoring by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and by the Educational Activities Board of the IEEE for an Informal Education Award. She was also inducted into the YWCA Academy of Women in 2008 for her contributions to eliminating racism and empowering women and was selected as the 2011 Woman of the Year by the RTP chapter of Women in Transportation. In 2013 she was named one of 125 Transformational Women by NC State University.
In addition to her roles at the University, Dr. Bottomley has taught fifth grade science as a volunteer consultant, helped schools reinvent themselves as engineering magnet schools, and acted as a consultant to the N.C. Dept. of Public Instruction and Wake County Public Schools.

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Assessing the GRIT of Incoming Engineering StudentsIn the fall of 2014, the College of Engineering at _____________ University surveyed 1500incoming engineering students with the twelve question GRIT assessment originated by AngelaDuckworth1. The qualities associated with GRIT have been publicized recently in the popularliterature, including the New York Times2. Previous research with other types of populationshave indicated a correlation between measured GRIT and persistence in school-basedachievements. This paper describes the results of this survey correlating measured GRIT withgender, origin (rural, suburban, urban) and ethnicity. GRIT scores are also correlated withvariables used to accept students to the College of Engineering, such as SAT scores and highschool grades. This GRIT survey was administered as the beginning of a longitudinal study tocompare the correlation of GRIT with retention to graduation with the correlation of admissionsvariables to retention to graduation. Admissions variables were originally selected because theypredict retention, the study will examine whether GRIT is more, less or additionally predictive ofstudent success.1 Duckworth, A.L., Peterson, C., Matthews, M.D., & Kelly, D.R. (2007). Grit: Perseverance andpassion for long-term goals. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 9, 1087-1101.2 Tough, P. (September 14, 2011). What if the Secret to Success Is Failure? New York Times.

Bottomley, L. (2015, June), Assessing the GRIT of Incoming Engineering Students Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.23588

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