July 26, 2021
July 26, 2021
July 19, 2022
One particular academic area of engineering student difficulty is in the field of mechanics. Mechanics, including introductory physics, statics, and dynamics, forms the basis of many upper division engineering courses and often causes students considerable conceptual and problem- solving difficulty. These courses sometimes have the highest failure rate for engineers and can be an engineering student’s first experience with academic difficulty. Although grades might be predicted by factors such as high school GPA or standardized test results (e.g., ACT/SAT), we postulate that non-cognitive factors such as grit and motivation might play a larger role in student performance in mechanics. The Studying Underlying Characteristics of Computing and Engineering Student Success (SUCCESS) survey was designed to investigate how these types of non-cognitive and affective (NCA) competencies can better predict academic success. Using results of the SUCCESS survey given to hundreds of students at a large western public engineering school, this work investigates the correlation between the 14 constructs measured by the survey (including such factors as Self Control, Motivation, Grit, Identity and Belongingness) to performance in introductory engineering physics courses, engineering statics, and engineering dynamics. Adding NCA factors to traditional predictors of Math SAT score and Highs school GPA increased the R^2 values by up to 0.1. Test anxiety was a strong negative predictor for all mechanics course grades, and Time and Study environment was positively correlated to grades in statics and dynamics.
Self, B. P., & Landy, J., & Widmann, J. M., & Chen, J., & Kerfs, M. (2021, July), The Mechanics of SUCCESS: How Non-Cognitive and Affective Factors Relate to Academic Performance in Engineering Mechanics Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference. https://peer.asee.org/37876
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