Asee peer logo

Reinventing the First-Year Seminar and Student Support Programs to Decrease the Number of Failed Grades in the First Semester and to Reach a 90 Percent First-Year Retention Rate

Download Paper |

Conference

2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Columbus, Ohio

Publication Date

June 24, 2017

Start Date

June 24, 2017

End Date

June 28, 2017

Conference Session

First-Year Programs: Paying Attention to Retention

Tagged Division

First-Year Programs

Tagged Topic

Diversity

Page Count

15

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/28791

Download Count

57

Request a correction

Paper Authors

biography

Mary E. Goodwin University of South Florida

visit author page

Dr. Goodwin, who has engineering degrees in industrial and environmental engineering, is the Director of Student Services in the College of Engineering at the University of South Florida. She worked in industry for nine years and more than 23 years in higher education, focusing on engineering education and retention issues.

visit author page

Download Paper |

Abstract

Reaching over a 90% Retention Rate in Engineering at a Large Metropolitan University where over 30% of its Students are Pell Grant Eligible by Re-Inventing the First Year Seminar and Student Support Programs.

Universities are focusing extensively on how to retain students at the university level and in engineering majors. First year students encounter much stress as they navigate living for the first time away from home, separating from their parents, and encountering a rigorous curriculum. Attachment theory has become the foremost theory in understanding affect regulation especially under stress. Students with insecure attachment styles tend to have deficits in social self-efficacy and tend to use maladaptive copy strategies to handle stress. Students with insecure attachments styles tend to have higher levels of depression and anxiety which negatively impacts their academic performance. At this university, engineering students who receive less than a 2.00 GPA their first semester in college averaged about a 30% first year retention rate and a 9% to 16% six-year graduation rate. Over 30% of the students are Pell grant eligible and the college has to accept nearly everyone into the College. This study looked at attempts at reducing stress in first year students in hopes to increase their first semester GPA by increasing advisor contacts and support, and by re-inventing how the first year seminar so that it helps to quickly identify at-risk students immediately. Initial findings showed a decrease in the percentage of students receiving less than a 2.00 GPA their first semester and a year later the college of engineering reached a 90.4% retention rate for the first time.

Goodwin, M. E. (2017, June), Reinventing the First-Year Seminar and Student Support Programs to Decrease the Number of Failed Grades in the First Semester and to Reach a 90 Percent First-Year Retention Rate Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. https://peer.asee.org/28791

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: © 2017 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