Skip to Main Content
Research shows life experiences, specifically community-based shared experiences before the freshman year, are a key factor in professional identity growth, but few studies explore exactly what it is about these experiences that contribute to students' identity development. Our study aims to further understand exactly how this identification happens to assist faculty and program administrators in understanding what ways they can help students identify with their profession in a stronger way. Through a mixed methods research design, we will answer the following research question: How do summer preparatory programs contribute to students' development of an engineering identity? We started with a series of focus groups with participants from a summer engineering transition program which is covered in this paper and will continue in the future with additional focus group data and a quantitative survey at a large research institution and at a military academy. Ultimately, our goal is to uncover how students' develop their professional identities.
Frontiers in Education Conference (FIE), 2011
Date of Conference: 12-15 Oct. 2011