Asee peer logo

Women and ALANA Students’ Retention and Progress Towards STEM Degrees at a Predominantly Liberal Arts Institution

Download Paper |


2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Vancouver, BC

Publication Date

June 26, 2011

Start Date

June 26, 2011

End Date

June 29, 2011



Conference Session

Recruitment & Retention of Women II

Tagged Division

Women in Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

22.1694.1 - 22.1694.14



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Suzanne Keilson Loyola University, Maryland

visit author page

Suzanne Keilson currently serves as Associate Dean of Loyola College of Arts and Sciences at Loyola University, Maryland. She is a member of the Engineering Department where she teaches courses in Introduction to Engineering, Signal Processing, and Electric and Magnetic Properties of Materials. Her research interests include auditory signal processing, universal and sustainable design, design education and STEM education especially for underrepresented groups. She has a Ph.D. in Applied Physics from Columbia University, New York.

visit author page

author page

Irah Modry-Caron Loyola University, Maryland

Download Paper |


Women and ALANA students’ retention and progress towards STEM degrees at a predominantly liberal arts institutionIn the summer 2008, the Office of Institutional Research working in collaboration with facultyand administrators at a private comprehensive institution conducted a study evaluating Womenand ALANA students’ retention and progress towards Science, Technology, Engineering, andMathematics (STEM) degrees. At this institution the choice of majors included; Biology,Chemistry, Physics, Mathematical Sciences, Computer Science, and Engineering. The Classesof 2004 to 2008 were evaluated in terms of their initial educational goals compared to theiractual retention, progression, and eventual attainment of bachelor degrees. SAT scores and GPAsin high school and college were part of the dataset. This report focuses on whether there aresignificant differences between gender and racial groups across measures of academicperformance, retention, and degree attainment. Two of the most interesting findings are thatthere was no significant difference between men and women in percent who persist to a degreeand that about 6% of the total number of students with no initial intention to major in a STEMfield do end up with a STEM degree. This relatively small percentage adds a significant totalnumber of students to these STEM programs at a predominantly liberal arts institution and mightrepresent an important population from which to recruit new STEM majors.

Keilson, S., & Modry-Caron, I. (2011, June), Women and ALANA Students’ Retention and Progress Towards STEM Degrees at a Predominantly Liberal Arts Institution Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--18962

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: © 2011 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