June 14, 2015
June 14, 2015
June 17, 2015
26.410.1 - 26.410.21
Correlation between engineering students’ performance in mathematics and academicsuccessIt is generally believed that the performance of engineering students in their undergraduatestudy is dependent on their mathematics performance, but there is only little data availablethat substantiates that presumption. This study aims at shedding some light on thisperceived dependency by comparing examination results in mathematics with those of thecore engineering subjects over a period of more than ten years.To identify the relationship between the students’ individual mathematical proficiency andtheir performance in applied engineering subjects, the examination performance of studentsin second and third semester mathematics courses have been correlated with theircorresponding performances in second and third semester mechanics and other mechanicalengineering subjects. The results show that there is a strong correlation between themathematics and mechanics grades; a correlation between mathematics and otherengineering core subjects also exists but is, in general, less distinct.In addition, the dropout rate for students enrolled in the classes from 2002 until 2009 hasbeen compared with their performance on an anonymous pre-course diagnostic test ofmathematical skills, which has been taking place each year in the first week of study. Priorstudies on the relationships between students’ university entry scores and theirperformance in terms of grade point averages have shown that the expected correlationseither do not exist or are too weak to base educational interventions on. A comparison ofpre-college mathematics skills with degree program drop-out rates, on the other hand,shows a clear trend that below-average high school mathematics education entails anelevated risk of failure.
Bischof, G., & Zwölfer, A., & Rubeša, D. (2015, June), Correlation Between Engineering Students' Performance in Mathematics and Academic Success Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.23749
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