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Edge 2008 Program – The First Signs Of Maturity

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2009 Annual Conference & Exposition


Austin, Texas

Publication Date

June 14, 2009

Start Date

June 14, 2009

End Date

June 17, 2009



Conference Session

Two-Year/Four-Year: From Articulation to Matriculation

Tagged Division

Two Year College Division

Page Count


Page Numbers

14.505.1 - 14.505.11



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Paper Authors


Dan Dimitriu San Antonio College

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DAN G. DIMITRIU has been practicing engineering since 1970 and taught engineering courses concurrently for over 20 years. He has been involved with several engineering societies and was elected vice-chair of the Two-Year College Division of ASEE in 2005. He has been the coordinator of the Engineering Program at San Antonio College since 2001. His research interests are: alternative fuels, fuel cells, plastics, and engineering education.

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Jerry O'Connor San Antonio College

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JERRY O’CONNOR has been teaching physics (and occasionally engineering and math) courses since 1980. He was the Campus Coordinator for the Texas Alliance for Minority Participation program from 1993 to 2002, and is currently the Department Chairperson for Physics, Engineering, & Architecture. He has been involved in numerous initiatives to integrate the findings of physics and engineering education research with education practice.

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

EDGE 2008 Program – The First Signs of Maturity Abstract This paper presents a brief description and history of the EDGE (Early Development of General Engineering) Summer Bridge Program that was initiated in 2003 1 and focuses on the sixth iteration of the program. This project has been supported by grants from the Department of Education (MSEIP P120A050080) and Alamo Community College District Foundation. Brief History of the Program The original version of the EDGE program was intended to serve well-prepared high school students in the 10th and 11th grades who would have participated in the San Antonio Pre- freshman Engineering Program (PREP) 2. EDGE was designed to introduce them to college level course work as a learning community and provide activities to help them develop independent learning and teamwork skills with the goal of increasing their likelihood of earning a college degree in engineering, science, math, or other related field. The learning community courses offered were Introduction to Engineering and College Algebra. Since the total number of applicants, as well as the fraction eligible for College Algebra, was disappointingly low (see Table 5), we implemented two significant changes for the following year. One was our method of promoting the program and the other was to restructure the program to accommodate students who were not ready for College Algebra. For the second year of EDGE, our advertising efforts were more focused on making direct contact with high school principals and school district administrators, and College Algebra was replaced with Computer Literacy as the second learning community course. Supplemental work with computer assisted Math instruction was also added. The change in marketing strategy was effective, and the number of applications increased considerably from the first year. However, only half of the applicants met college admission requirements, and the math placement scores were even lower than in the previous year. While the results of the EDGE II Program were satisfactory, they were not quite as good as EDGE I, and students were not sufficiently challenged by the Computer Literacy course 3. This prompted us to return to our original course offerings for EDGE III in 2005, and to add 12th graders to our targeted student population. This strategy also failed to produce a sufficient number of applicants who scored high enough on the math placement test to enroll in College Algebra, and the Program reverted to the previous learning community courses, (Introduction to Engineering and Computer Literacy). The Computer Literacy course was modified slightly to provide more advanced assignments and was more tightly integrated with the Introduction to Engineering course. The coursework was supplemented by computer assisted Math instruction as before 4. For the following year (EDGE IV-2006), the program was more substantially revised to address the inadequate challenge provided by the Computer Literacy course. The replacement course was a lab enhanced version of Conceptual Physics, and the afternoon computer assisted math training was extended and made mandatory. Another new development in EDGE IV was the opportunity for EDGE graduates who met the math benchmark at the end of the Program to enroll in a College Algebra course offered (on Saturdays) during the following fall semester. This course was supported with a study group leader. Twelve students enrolled in the College Algebra course and four of them continued on with a Pre-Calculus course offered during the spring 2007 semester.5

Dimitriu, D., & O'Connor, J. (2009, June), Edge 2008 Program – The First Signs Of Maturity Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--5394

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