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Retention And Persistence Of Undergraduate Engineering Students: "What Happens After The First Year?"

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Conference

2007 Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Honolulu, Hawaii

Publication Date

June 24, 2007

Start Date

June 24, 2007

End Date

June 27, 2007

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

Retention of STEM Students

Tagged Division

Minorities in Engineering

Page Count

9

Page Numbers

12.1243.1 - 12.1243.9

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/2344

Download Count

48

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Paper Authors

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Annita Alting City College of the City University of New York

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Ardie Walser City College of the City University of New York

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ARDIE D. WALSER
Ardie D. Walser is an Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering and the Associate Dean of the School of Engineering at the City College of the City University of New York. Dr. Walser is a former Division Chair of the Minorities in Engineering Division (MIND) of the American Association of Engineering Education (ASEE). He was the treasurer of MIND from 1996 to 1998, and the MIND Program Chair from 1999 to 2000. He has collaborated in the creation and direction of numerous faculty development workshops that have been held through out the country. Dr. Walser is the recipient of several faculty awards including the faculty of the year award from the Eta Kappa Knu engineering honor society. He has given numerous workshops and lecture demonstrations at grades schools, high schools, universities and community centers, introducing young people to engineering and science.

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Abstract
NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Retention and Persistence of Undergraduate Engineering Students “What happens after the first year?”

Abstract

As presented in the Phase I report, The Engineer of 2020: Visions of Engineering in the New Century, the changing demographics within countries, including the United States, where the number of minorities will grow rapidly in comparison with traditional majority groups, has major implications for the future of engineering, a profession where minorities and women are underrepresented. Engineering programs must find better ways to attract and retain minority students if the United States is to remain a technological leader. In order to develop more effective tools to increase retention an understanding of what influences the success or failure of engineering students is needed. In an earlier study to determine which student entry characteristics best determined long-term retention and graduation, we found for transfer students that the number of credits in math and science and previous GPA (Grade Point Average) are the strongest predictors of retention and academic achievement. In the case of freshmen students their placement in calculus played a major role in their ultimate success. This paper describes what happens from year to year and how retention and ultimately graduation are predicted by not only student entry characteristics, but also their academic performance in the first two years. Our findings show that attrition in the second and third years is at its highest, but that it stabilizes after four years.

1. Introduction

Engineering programs must find better ways to attract and retain minority students if the United States is to remain a technological leader. As presented in the Phase I report, The Engineer of 2020: Visions of Engineering in the New Century, the changing demographics within countries, including the United States, where the number of minorities will grow rapidly in comparison with traditional majority groups, has major implications for the future of engineering, a profession where minorities and women are underrepresented1. In order to develop more effective tools to increase retention an understanding of what influences the success or failure of engineering students is needed.

The first two lines of the mission statement of the City College of New York (CCNY) are as follows:

“City College’s mission emphasizes access and excellence in undergraduate and graduate education and research. Requiring demonstrated potential for admission and a high level of accomplishment for graduation, the college provides a diverse student body with exceptional opportunities in creative intellectual pursuits.”

Alting, A., & Walser, A. (2007, June), Retention And Persistence Of Undergraduate Engineering Students: "What Happens After The First Year?" Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. https://peer.asee.org/2344

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