June 14, 2015
June 14, 2015
June 17, 2015
Minorities in Engineering
26.1157.1 - 26.1157.12
MIND Minority/Multicultural Engineering Program Impact: How Students Describe Their Perspective of Co-Curricular SupportAbstract Student support centers (e.g., Minority Engineering Programs) are common approaches tosupporting underrepresented students in engineering colleges at large, 4-year, public, research-intensive universities. Despite the widespread adoption of these student support centers, researchhas not yet fully examined the function of these units with regard to influencing the institutionalexperience of undergraduate. While many researchers have investigated student support centerswith regards to academic impact (i.e., change in GPA and graduation rates), we know very littleabout how these centers directly influence the institutional experiences of undergraduatestudents. The purpose of this qualitative multicase study is to highlight the student perspective ofminority/multicultural engineering programs (MEPs). In particular, our overarching researchquestion is as follows: From the student perspective, what impact does an MEP have on theundergraduate experiences of engineering students from underrepresent populations?This study is part of larger project focused on the use of co-curricular support in engineeringcolleges. The data analyzed for this study is a subset of the data from the larger study that wascollected from two of the six universities – one focus group was conducted at University 1 andtwo focus groups were conducts at University 2. Focus groups were used to understand theoverall impact students believed that the MEP had on the experience of underrepresentedengineering students at their institution. In particular, we investigated the advantages to beinginvolved, the disadvantages to being involved, reasons students were involved, and reasonsstudents were not involved. While students did report primarily positive impacts, lessonspertinent to the negative impact a MEP can have on the student experience were also revealed.These findings will assist engineering colleges with offering student interventions that positivelyinfluence the undergraduate experience while mitigating unintended negative impacts. This studyis a step towards better understanding the use of co-curricular support to improve the institutionalexperience of undergraduate engineering students.
Lee, W. C., & Matusovich, H. M. (2015, June), Minority/Multicultural Engineering Program Impact: A Student Perspective of Co-Curricular Support Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24494
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