June 15, 2014
June 15, 2014
June 18, 2014
24.693.1 - 24.693.14
Impact of hands-on first year course on student retention, satisfaction, and knowledgeX University offers a 3 credit hour introductory engineering course that is required for all firstsemester engineering students and open to all students. Half of the student outcomes in thecourse are focused on the engineering profession: explain the basic practice of engineering,describing background histories, impact on society, skills employed, and professional/ethicalresponsibilities; summarize the knowledge bases, skills, problem types, and analysis techniquesof the four engineering disciplines offered at X University; and analyze information providedand learned to make an informed decision about choice of an engineering major. Theseoutcomes are focused on raising student understanding of engineering disciplines in order toenhance their ability to make an informed decision about choice of an engineering major.At the start of the course students are surveyed to collect data on the major in which they arecurrently registered, initial actual knowledge of engineering disciplines, initial perceivedknowledge of engineering disciplines, initial interest in a specific engineering major, and reasonsfor selecting engineering (or taking course for non-engineering majors.)This paper investigates four topics: 1. Is there a correlation between a student’s initial desire to pursue a specific engineering major and their actual and perceived knowledge of that engineering discipline? 2. For those students who are interested in and knowledgeable about a specific engineering discipline, does the introductory course strengthen that interest? 3. For those students who are unsure about what specific engineering discipline to choose, are the students more likely to be interested in a specific engineering discipline at the end of the course? 4. Does the introductory course increase students’ knowledge, actual and perceived, about the specific engineering disciplines?[Initial data has been collected, the next occurrence of data collection is early December 2013.Data analysis leading to results will be completed in December 2013.]The results presented are an initial step in a longitudinal study that will investigate therelationships between major at the time of application to the university, initial knowledge ofengineering disciplines, initial perceived knowledge of engineering disciplines, initial interest inan engineering major, retention within a specific engineering major, retention withinengineering, and overall satisfaction with major choice.The desired outcome of this initial data collection and the longitudinal study is to identifyopportunities and obstacles in the processes of recruiting students to engineering and thestudent’s ultimate choice of major. Such information will be used to develop and implement aneffective program of recruitment and advising for the engineering majors at X University.
Byers, L. K., & Kile, J. W., & Kiassat, C. (2014, June), Impact of a Hands-on First-Year Course on Student Knowledge of and Interest in Engineering Disciplines Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--20585
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