Salt Lake City, Utah
June 23, 2018
June 23, 2018
July 27, 2018
Pre-College Engineering Education
One result of the growing concerns over the numbers of young people moving into STEM-related careers has been the expansion of formal and informal STEM education programming for pre-college youth, from elementary school through high school. While the numbers of programs have grown rapidly, there is little research on their long-term impacts on participant education and career trajectories. This paper presents interim findings from a multi-year longitudinal study of three national after-school robotics programs operated by FIRST, a global nonprofit that engages students in designing, building and competing complex robots with the goal of inspiring long-term interest in STEM. The study is tracking over 1200 FIRST program participants and comparison students over a five-year period through middle and high school and into college. Data sources include baseline and annual follow-up surveys of program participants and comparison students, as well as baseline parent surveys, surveys of adult team leaders/educators, and focus groups and telephone interviews with study participants. Focusing on the subset of study participants who have enrolled in at least one year of college at this point in time (approximately 450 students in 2017), the paper examines program impacts on student attitudes towards STEM and STEM careers; participation in STEM-related college courses; intention to major in STEM-related fields; and involvement in STEM-related internships and other activities.
Burack, C., & Melchior, A., & Hoover, M. (2018, June), Do After-school Robotics Programs Expand the Pipeline into STEM Majors in College? (RTP) Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/30341
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