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Factors Impacting Poor Performance in Pre-Calculus

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Conference

2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Vancouver, BC

Publication Date

June 26, 2011

Start Date

June 26, 2011

End Date

June 29, 2011

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

Issues and Answers in Mathematics Education

Tagged Division

Mathematics

Page Count

16

Page Numbers

22.702.1 - 22.702.16

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/17983

Download Count

29

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Paper Authors

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Paul J. Kauffmann East Carolina University

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Paul J. Kauffmann is Professor and Chair in the Department of Engineering at East Carolina University. His industry career included positions as Plant Manager and Engineering Director. Dr. Kauffmann received a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering and M.Eng. in Mechanical Engineering from Virginia Tech. He received his Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering from Penn State
and is a registered Professional Engineer in Virginia and North Carolina.

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Sviatoslav Archava East Carolina University

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Sviatoslav Archava is a Teaching Assistant Professor at East Carolina University. Dr. Archava received a MA degree in Mathematics from Moscow State University and a Ph.D. degree in Mathematics from University of California, Los Angeles. Prior to coming to East Carolina University he taught at Purdue University and McMaster University. His research interests are in Algebraic Geometry and Mathematics Education.

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Ricky T. Castles East Carolina University

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Ricky Castles is a Teaching Instructor and Academic Advisor in the Department of Engineering at East Carolina University, Greenville, NC, USA. He holds a B.S. (2003), M.S. (2006), and Ph.D. (2010) in Computer Engineering and an MS in Industrial and Systems Engineering (2008, Human Factors Option) all from Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA, USA. He has previously worked as a contractor at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory in the Navy Center for Applied Research in Artificial Intelligence in Washington, D.C. and as a software developer for Imaging Science Research, Inc., Burke, VA. His research interests are in the area of human-computer interaction, knowledge modeling, and educational technology. Dr. Castles is a member of the ASEE and the IEEE.

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Heather L. Ries East Carolina University

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Heather L. Ries is an Associate Professor in the Department of Mathematics and an Associate Dean in the College of Arts and Sciences at East Carolina University. Dr. Ries received a B.A. degree in Mathematics and History from Bates College. She received MA and Ph.D. degrees in Mathematics from the State University of New York at Binghamton. Her research interests are in Algebra and Mathematics Education.

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Stephanie T. Sullivan East Carolina University

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Stephanie T. Sullivan is an Instructor in the Department of Engineering at East Carolina University. She earned her B.S. degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN, her M.S. degree in chemical engineering from North Carolina State University, and is currently a Ph.D. candidate in chemical & biomolecular engineering at North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC. Her research interests include the development and analysis of biomaterials, biosystem rheology, and student leadership development.

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Karen A. De Urquidi East Carolina University

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Abstract

Factors Impacting Poor Performance in Pre CalculusEfforts to increase the STEM workforce have often focused on the K-12 area to address interestand major selection. A neglected area involves examination of the success factors for studentswho have selected a STEM major but do not arrive in the university setting with strong androbust mathematics background. Consequently, these students are at risk for failure and loss tothe STEM workforce. Many of these students are placed in pre calculus in anticipation that thiswill allow them to build their mathematics skills in preparation for success in calculus.Unfortunately, although many of these students appear to be motivated for and capable of precalculus success, they do not do well and this often results in changes of the major and loss ofSTEM career potential. Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain this issue includingthe possibility that these students have a negative attitude from missing calculus placement andas a result are not motivated. This paper will contribute to this literature by presenting the resultsfactors impacting success of STEM majors in pre calculus to more clearly highlight real fromperceived factors and to identify interventions which have high potential for success rateimprovement. The results of this paper will be of interest to mathematics and engineeringeducators who are working to improve retention and success in the first year of college.

Kauffmann, P. J., & Archava, S., & Castles, R. T., & Ries, H. L., & Sullivan, S. T., & De Urquidi, K. A. (2011, June), Factors Impacting Poor Performance in Pre-Calculus Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. https://peer.asee.org/17983

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