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Data And Perspectives On Retention

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1999 Annual Conference


Charlotte, North Carolina

Publication Date

June 20, 1999

Start Date

June 20, 1999

End Date

June 23, 1999



Page Count


Page Numbers

4.156.1 - 4.156.5

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Paper Authors

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Hal Broberg

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

Session 3247

Data and Perspectives on Retention

Hal Broberg Indiana University Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW)


The results of a study and perspectives on retention in an EET program are discussed. Data used in the study includes graduation data for the entire history (over 30 years) of the program as well as more detailed data from the past 14 years. Factors considered include graduation rate for day vs. evening courses, instructor ability, class size, and the time it takes students to achieve a degree. The study is based on data and the perspective of the author, who is a faculty member, and currently department chair. Results indicate: that faculty considered as “non-motivating” teachers should not teach first semester courses and that emphasis should be placed on encouraging students to declare their major early and on providing interesting first semester courses.

I. Introduction

Indiana University Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW) is a state-supported commuter campus with about 11,000 students (about 5500 FTE). The Electrical and Computer Engineering Technology Department (ECET) provides instruction for accredited1 A.S. and B.S. programs in Electrical Engineering Technology (EET). There are currently about 220 students majoring in EET, over 1000 students have received Purdue EET degrees during the past 30 years from this department, and the average age of students is about 28.

Many studies of retention have been presented in the ASEE Prism and other publications. This study of retention in a small department was motivated by the desire to see how applicable common ideas concerning retention are to this program and to develop methods to increase retention. Data used were from alumni records and from the registrar. Factors considered include instructor ability, day vs. evening classes, full-time vs. part-time instructors, and class size. The study is based on the data and the perspective of the author, a faculty member for fourteen years and currently department chair.

Printed grade rosters for each course were available from the registrar’s office with computer files available since Fall 95. Graduation data are from alumni rosters for the department, provided by Purdue University. Personal observations are based on knowledge of students and instructors during the period studied.

II. Degree and Time to Graduation

1 Technology Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology

Broberg, H. (1999, June), Data And Perspectives On Retention Paper presented at 1999 Annual Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina.

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