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Work in progress - building community among first year engineering students

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3 Author(s)
Eric W. Hansen ; Dartmouth College, USA ; Ellen M. Stein ; Vicki V. May

ldquoEngineering Workshopsrdquo is a peer mentoring program we are developing that seeks to improve retention of first year students by drawing them into the engineering school community while they are still taking prerequisite calculus and physics courses. The goals of these workshops are: (1) to provide a facilitated opportunity for prospective engineering students to meet and form a support system; (2) to introduce first year students to the engineering school and its teamwork culture; and (3) to give them a motivational peek at how the math and physics they are studying is used in engineering. Workshops meet weekly for at least two hours in the engineering building. Each is facilitated by a pair of upperclass engineering students. In the first four terms, weekly attendance has averaged 30 in all sessions (roughly 25% of prospective majors). Student responses in end-of-term surveys have been consistently positive, citing the benefits of meeting other engineering students and working in small groups.

Published in:

2008 38th Annual Frontiers in Education Conference

Date of Conference:

22-25 Oct. 2008