Asee peer logo

Improve Retention Rate and Performance of Students in STEM Field Using a Virtual Teaching Assistant System

Download Paper |


2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013



Conference Session

Capstone Design Courses and Tools in support of Systems Engineering Education

Tagged Division

Systems Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

23.710.1 - 23.710.26



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Pablo Biswas Texas A&M International University

visit author page

Dr. Pablo Biswas received Ph.D. and M.S. in in Industrial Engineering from Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and B.S. in Mechanical Engineering Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology, Dhaka, Bangladesh. He is an Assistant Professor of Engineering at Texas A&M International University, Laredo, TX. Dr. Biswas’s research interest is in supply chain management, inventory control, lean production systems, and information systems.

visit author page

author page

Runchang Lin Texas A&M International University

Download Paper |


IMPROVE RETENTION RATE AND PERFORMANCE OF STUDENTS IN STEM FIELD USING A VIRTUAL  TEACHING ASSISTANT SYSTEM This research focuses on improving the students’ performance in class and retention rate in STEM field of  a  Hispanic  serving  institution  by  implementing  a  Virtual  Teaching  Assistant  System  (ViTAS)  during their initial stages in the university lives. The ViTAS system is a digital repository where instructor posts the  homework  assignments  and  their  due  dates  for  his/her  respective  classes.  Similarly,  the  students submit  their  work based on the respective assignments through ViTAS system. After  the  due date the instructors posts the standard solution and assign peers’ work to each students for grading anonymously by using ViTAS system module. These methods are used to create a learning environment outside the lecture period and to engage the students in learning how to evaluate others/their works. Using these exercises, the students learn to correct their mistakes and observe different solution techniques of the problems assigned. The previous research shows that in the STEM field of a Hispanic serving institution, student drop rate is very high during initial stages. After using ViTAS, the students drop rate is reduced significantly.  In  this  research,  the  data  of  the  student  success  rate  are  collected,  statistically  analyzed and presented with the hypothesis that the more students involve themselves in learning outside of the lecture period, the more improvement in the retention rate and performance of the students are. 

Biswas, P., & Lin, R. (2013, June), Improve Retention Rate and Performance of Students in STEM Field Using a Virtual Teaching Assistant System Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--19724

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2013 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015