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Enhancement of Learning Outcome, Enrollment, and Retention in a New Construction Management Program

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2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Vancouver, BC

Publication Date

June 26, 2011

Start Date

June 26, 2011

End Date

June 29, 2011



Conference Session

Developing Young MINDS in Engineering, Part II

Tagged Division

Minorities in Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

22.616.1 - 22.616.12



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Paper Authors


Tamara Chowdhury Alabama A&M University

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Tamara Chowdhury, Alabama A&M University.
Tamara Chowdhury is an Assistant Professor & Coordinator of Construction Management Program in the Department of Engineering Technology at Alabama A&M University in Huntsville, AL. Mrs. Chowdhury has extensive background in teaching undergraduate students in the Department of Civil Engineering, Construction Management and conducting research. She also worked for a multinational research organization for many years. Mrs. Chowdhury earned her MS in Civil engineering from Clarkson University, New York, USA and B.S. in Civil Engineering from Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology.

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Enhancement of Learning Outcome, Enrolment and Retention in a New Construction Management Program    Abstract Student success and retention research in higher education has provided an immenseunderstanding of factors that explain why students decide to leave, and to some extent, whystudents persist on to graduation. Based on a study conducted, involvement of undergraduatestudents in research or hands on projects related to their discipline, field trip, financial assistanceand proper mentoring were found to be among the top factors that can improve the learningoutcome and retention of underrepresented minority students in applied technology.The participation of skilled minorities in the national construction industry workforce isextremely low, which is a real concern and needs immediate attention to improve diversity. Thispaper first addresses the various causes of this low representation, and then discusses someremedies.The Construction Management program’s multidisciplinary approach at Alabama A & MUniversity combines essential components of construction techniques with concepts of businessmanagement and behavioral science to develop technically qualified individuals for responsiblemanagement roles in the design, construction, and operation of major construction projects. Thefocus of the program is on the fundamental concepts and technical skills required to create awide range of career paths in the construction profession. This paper shows that by introducinghands on project opportunities, field trip to under-construction projects, introduction to relatedsoftware, hands-on lab work, contemporary education, financial support and through propermentoring, the enrollment, retention and successful graduation of underrepresented minority(male and female) can be significantly increased which will lead to a balanced workforce andimprove the national economy.

Chowdhury, T. (2011, June), Enhancement of Learning Outcome, Enrollment, and Retention in a New Construction Management Program Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--17897

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