New Orleans, Louisiana
June 26, 2016
June 26, 2016
August 28, 2016
Educational Research and Methods
This research paper reports on the development of an engineering-based peer tutoring center and the impact of the center on undergraduate engineering students. In three years, the tutoring center has grown from employing 4 peer tutors and providing tutoring for 3 courses, to employing more than twenty tutors providing tutoring for more than twenty courses. Tutors services are offered to students on a walk-in basis for courses with at least 60 students enrolled and by appointment for smaller courses or courses that generate less tutoring interest. Tutors are trained in the use of evidence-based tutoring techniques, such as the Socratic method.
In order to quantify the usage and impact of the tutoring center, data was collected through two methods. First, student visit data was recorded using a digital card swipe system that then populates a database with the visit specifics as well as connecting with the College of Engineering’s main database containing student demographics and academic performance. Second, data was gathered using surveys administered to students receiving tutoring, as well as surveys administered to the peer tutors.
The data collected was analyzed to determine how the center was being utilized and how students’ academic performances are affected by tutoring. For example, the population of students utilizing tutoring services was compared with the general College of Engineering student population. Additionally, student and tutor survey results showed that both students and tutors believed that the students’ understanding of course material was stronger after a tutoring session. Initial analyses show that students who attend tutoring perform slightly better than students who do not attend tutoring in a specific course, but future work will focus on fully understanding the effect of tutoring on a student’s grade point average and retention. Results are compared to previously published literature concerning usage and impact of other engineering peer tutoring centers.
Pelleg, B., & Imhoff, K., & Ayers, K., & Boettcher, P. A. (2016, June), Utilization of an Engineering Peer Tutoring Center for Undergraduate Students Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.27174
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