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The Use of the Social Cognitive Career Theory to Predict Engineering Students’ Motivation in the PRODUCED Program

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2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

Retention and Two-year to Four-year Transfer

Tagged Division

Two Year College Division

Page Count


Page Numbers

25.1354.1 - 25.1354.13



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Paper Authors


Cheryl Carrico P.E. Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University Orcid 16x16

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Cheryl Carrico is a Ph.D. student in engineering education at Virginia Tech. Carrico is also an Engineering Manager for General Dynamics in the southwestern part of Virginia and works with local schools to promote STEM careers.

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Chosang Tendhar Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

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Chosang Tendhar is a Ph.D. student,
Educational Research and Evaluation (EDRE),
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

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  AbstractWithin the state of Virginia, an initiative to increase the number of engineering students existsvia a program called PRODUCED. PRODUCED is an outreach from the University of Virginia(UVA) School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS) that was initially established to helpfill an engineering gap being realized in the Lynchburg, Virginia area, with program roots datingback to 2007; the first graduates are expected in the spring of 2012. To measure the expectationsof the students, a portion of Lent and Brown’s Social Cognitive Career Theory (SCCT) modelwas used. A quantitative survey was developed and sent to students at five community collegesin the state of Virginia. The purpose of the study was to test the predictive relationship amongfour variabels (self-efficacy, outcome expectations, interests, and goals) of the SCCT model andto measure participants’ motivation to pursue engineering degrees and careers. The data from 68responses were analyzed using internal consistency measures, descriptive statistics, correlations,factor analyses, and multiple regression. KMO and Barlett’s Test yeilded significant results toallow factor analyses. The mean of all four variables were above the mid-point of five-pointLikert scale. Intercorrelations among the four variables are significant. Cronbach’s alpha of fourvariables ranged from .75 to .91. Three regression models were used to measure the predictiverelationship among the four variables, and all the models yielded significant results. All of theassumptions of regression were reasonably met. However, outcome expectations were not agood predictor of goals. The success of students in 2+2 programs is important; knowing theextent to which students are motivated toward a career goal and then understanding whatmotivates them is critical to this success. This work provides valuable information as a first stepin knowing how to measure student motivation to persist and as to know areas to further researchto understand that motivation.

Carrico, C., & Tendhar, C. (2012, June), The Use of the Social Cognitive Career Theory to Predict Engineering Students’ Motivation in the PRODUCED Program Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--22111

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