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While educators have continuously and arduously worked towards reforming the formal curriculum for scholarly gains, the hidden curriculum (HC) has a place of its own, garnering interest in academic institutions of higher education. HC consists of the unacknowledged and often, unintentional exclusionary systemic messages that are structurally supported and sustained. Due to the persistent influence of HC in helping establish the norm in educational and working environments, research in this topic is gaining prominence in fields like engineering. This paper contributes to the knowledge base by exploring the level of HC awareness (HCA) and the definitions that over 600 undergraduate engineering students across Hispanic-Serving and non-Hispanic Serving institutions ascribed to in their explanations of hidden curriculum. Using mixed-methods analysis, two-factor ANOVA was conducted on the quantitative items of HCA, at the intersection of self-identified gender and institutional type, followed by open and axial coding of the written definitions provided by the participants. Results suggest there were significant differences between HSIs and non-HSIs in their rating of the quantitative survey data with regards to their HCA. The responses to the open-ended question yielded four specific themes that showcased the predominant forms of HC assumptions that they ascribed to: (a) Confirmation of Existence of HC; (b) Attribution of HC to Cognitive Elements; (c) Attribution of HC to Socio-Humanistic Elements; and (d) Refusal of Existence of HC.
Sunny, C., & Villanueva, I. (2022, August), Engineering Students Conceptions of The Hidden Curriculum in Hispanic-Serving Institutions: Learning to Inform Practice Paper presented at 2022 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Minneapolis, MN. https://peer.asee.org/40496
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