Event Title

T4-C: Confidence, Confusion, and Concerns: Perceptions of Freshmen Engineering Students

Location

Bill France C

Start Date

6-3-2018 8:40 AM

Description

The Virginia Military Institute has numerically tracked the retention of incoming freshmen engineering students for years. These studies have shown that math preparedness has limited value in answering why some cadets remain in engineering and some leave. To supplement the existing data, a survey was created and given to all engineering freshmen cadets during the first two weeks of the fall 2017 semester. This paper provides the surprising results of this initial survey that had an 84% response rate and revealed confusion and misunderstanding of certain topics. Over ninety percent of the cadets felt extremely confident of their ability to succeed in their engineering courses. More than twice as many cadets were concerned with overall workload than math preparedness. Understanding these perceptions should enable the engineering departments to improve retention of engineering students by addressing concerns, misconceptions, and overconfidence.

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Mar 6th, 8:40 AM

T4-C: Confidence, Confusion, and Concerns: Perceptions of Freshmen Engineering Students

Bill France C

The Virginia Military Institute has numerically tracked the retention of incoming freshmen engineering students for years. These studies have shown that math preparedness has limited value in answering why some cadets remain in engineering and some leave. To supplement the existing data, a survey was created and given to all engineering freshmen cadets during the first two weeks of the fall 2017 semester. This paper provides the surprising results of this initial survey that had an 84% response rate and revealed confusion and misunderstanding of certain topics. Over ninety percent of the cadets felt extremely confident of their ability to succeed in their engineering courses. More than twice as many cadets were concerned with overall workload than math preparedness. Understanding these perceptions should enable the engineering departments to improve retention of engineering students by addressing concerns, misconceptions, and overconfidence.