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Title: Increasing Diversity and Student Success in Engineering and Computer Science through Contextualized Practices
Wright College, an open-access community college in northwest Chicago, is an independently accredited institution in the City Colleges of Chicago (CCC) system. Wright is federally recognized Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) with the largest enrollment of Hispanic students in Illinois. In 2015 Wright piloted a selective guaranteed admission program to the Grainer College of Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). Students in the Engineering Pathways (EP) program follow a cohort system with rigorous curriculum aligned to UIUC. From this pilot Wright built programmatic frameworks (one-stop intentional advising; mandatory tutoring, near-peer, faculty and professional mentoring; and access to professional organizations) to support EP students. Initial results were positive: 89% transfer rate and 89% bachelor’s degree completion. Building from the EP frameworks, Wright obtained a National Science Foundation (NSF) HSI research grant to expand programs to non-pathway students. Through the grant, Building Bridges into Engineering and Computer Science, the college developed assessment tools, increased the number of 4-year partnerships, and designed and implemented an Engineering Summer Bridge with curriculum contextualized for the needs of the Near-STEM ready students. These students need one to four semesters of Math remediation before moving into the EP. The college measured the Bridge participants' success through more » analysis of Math proficiency before and after the Bridge, professional identity (sense of belonging) and self-efficacy (the belief that the students will succeed as engineers). Surveys and case study interviews are being supplemented with retention, persistence, transfer, associate and bachelor degree completion rates, and time for degree completion. The key research question is the correlation of these data with self-efficacy and professional identity measures. Preliminary Results: 1) Sixty percent (60%) of the Bridge participants eliminated the remedial Math requirement completely. (Increased Math proficiency) 2) Engineering admission and enrollment doubled. 4) Increased institutionalized collaborations: the creation of a more programmatic admission, advising, transfer, rigorous curriculum, and other student support services within the College. 5) Increased partnerships with 4-year transfer institutions resulting in the expansion of guaranteed/dual admissions programs with scholarships, paid research experience, dual advising, and students transferring as juniors. 5) Increased diversity in Engineering and Computer Science student population. Wright will share an overview of the Building Bridges into Engineering and Computer Science project, research design, expanded practices, assessments and insights from the development and implementation of this program. The developed frameworks will be applied to provide ALL students at Wright, and at CCC equitable Engineering and Computer Science education. « less
Authors:
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Award ID(s):
1832553
Publication Date:
NSF-PAR ID:
10172205
Journal Name:
2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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