Matching Items (20)

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The Influence of Validating Advising Practices on Intention to Persist for Women and Underrepresented Minority Students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics

Description

There has been an ever-increasing demand in the United States to produce educated science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) professionals. Because more women and minority students have begun their higher

There has been an ever-increasing demand in the United States to produce educated science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) professionals. Because more women and minority students have begun their higher educational preparation at community colleges, these institutions have been uniquely positioned to support these students and increase the number of STEM graduates. Nevertheless, to attain this commendable goal, community college staff and faculty members will need to redouble their efforts to provide active and sustained programs and interventions to support and assure student persistence in STEM fields.

To address the problem of practice, the researcher engaged in a variety of validating practices to influence women and minority students’ intent to persist in a STEM degree. Thirteen, first-year women and minority students participated in the study. Validation theory (Rendón, 1994) provided a framework to inform the intervention and forms of validation. The validating practices included two advising visits and intentional email communications to students in their first semester at community college.

A mixed methods approach was employed to examine two objectives: (a) the types of validation students experienced in their first semester and (b) the influence of validating advising practices on intention to persist in STEM. The Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB; Ajzen, n.d.) guided study efforts in relation to the second objective. Data gathered included survey data, interviews, email communications, and researcher journal entries. Results suggested students experienced academic and interpersonal validation by in-class and out-of-class validating agents. Although not all experiences were validating, students were validated to a greater extent by their academic advisor. Because of validating advising practices, students in this study developed confidence in their ability to be capable college students. Students also felt motivated and expressed intentions to persist toward a STEM degree.

The discussion focuses on explaining outcomes of the four research questions by connecting to the extant literature. In addition, limitations of the study are presented. Finally, implications for practice, implications for future research, and lessons learned are also shared.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2020

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A multiplicity of successes: capabilities, refuge, and pathways in contemporary community colleges

Description

Community colleges, like all higher education institutions in the United States, have not been immune to the increased national focus on educational accountability and institutional effectiveness over the past three

Community colleges, like all higher education institutions in the United States, have not been immune to the increased national focus on educational accountability and institutional effectiveness over the past three decades. Federal and non-governmental initiatives aimed at tracking and reporting on institutional outcomes have focused on utilitarian academic and economic measures of student success that homogenize the goals, aspirations, and challenges of the individuals who attend these unique open-access institutions. This dissertation, which is comprised of three submission-ready scholarly peer-reviewed articles, examined community college students’ conceptualizations and valuations of “student success.” The research project was designed as a multiple methods single-site case study, and the data sources consisted of a large-scale student e-survey, follow-up semi-structured interviews with a heterogeneous group of students, semi-structured interviews with faculty and administrators, and a review of institutional documents. The interviews also incorporated two experimental visual elicitation techniques and a participatory ranking exercise. Article One introduces and operationalizes the author’s primary conceptual perspective, the capabilities approach, to develop a more comprehensive framework for understanding and evaluating community college student outcomes. This article documents the methodological process used to generate a theoretical and an empirical list of community college capabilities, which serve as the basis of future capabilities-based research on community college student success. Article Two draws on the student interview and student visual elicitation data to explore the capability category of “refuge” – a new, unexpected, and student-valued purpose of the community college as a safe escape from the complexities and demands of personal, home, and work life. In light of recent efforts to promote more structured and prescriptive college experiences to improve graduation rates, Article Three explores students’ perceptions of their pathways through the community college using the participant-generated and researcher-generated visual elicitation data. Findings indicate that students value the structure and the flexibility community colleges offer, as well as their own ability to be agents and architects of their educational experience. Taken together, these articles suggest that student success is less linear and more rhizomatic in structure than it is currently portrayed in the literature.

Contributors

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015

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Preparing high school students for transition to community college

Description

ABSTRACT

Although it is generally acknowledged that a college degree is foundational to achieving success in the 21st century, only 19.5% of those entering public community colleges graduate with an

ABSTRACT

Although it is generally acknowledged that a college degree is foundational to achieving success in the 21st century, only 19.5% of those entering public community colleges graduate with an associate's degree within three years (NCES, 2014). Many challenges have impeded students including being underprepared to transition from high school to college, being a first-generation college student, and having limited support networks.

The purpose of this action research project was to implement a college-going readiness program designed to increase the social and personal readiness of high school students making the transition from high school to college. The College Transition Project, the intervention, offered a series of face-to-face class sessions for students and online supplemental materials for students and parents (a) guiding and assisting students in navigating the college system, (b) improving social readiness, and (c) increasing goal setting, time management, communication, and stress management. The curriculum was designed to include key topics including potential pitfalls or challenges common to previously unsuccessful college students. Goal orientation, co-regulation, and self-regulation theories provided frameworks supporting the intervention. Over a five-week period, an instructor taught students who received information on these topics; while students and parents could review online resources at any time.

A concurrent mixed methods research design was employed and data included pre- and post-intervention surveys, field notes, and post-intervention interviews. Results indicated some modest outcomes were attained. Quantitative results indicated no changes in various study measures. By comparison, qualitative data showed students: recognized the usefulness of co-regulation as it related to college preparedness, realized self-regulation efforts would aid their transition to college, and developed some college navigation skills that would facilitate transition to college. Most students acknowledged the need to identify goals, engage in self-regulation, and practice self-efficacy as critical components for students transitioning from high school to college. The discussion explained the outcomes in terms of the theoretical frameworks. Implications focused on additional ways to develop self-efficacy and employ co-regulated activities and relationship building to aid in developing motivation and to nurture emerging identities in students who were transitioning from high school to college.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017

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The dualistic role of the community college ceramic artist-art teacher

Description

The role of an art educator is characteristically dualistic and paradoxical. Not only are most art educators trained as artists, but they also receive instruction on theories and practices used

The role of an art educator is characteristically dualistic and paradoxical. Not only are most art educators trained as artists, but they also receive instruction on theories and practices used in art education. The purpose of the study was to examine how community college ceramic instructors identify themselves within their dual roles as teacher-artists. I studied if and how the teacher-artist places emphasis on one position over the other, or how they successfully synthesized these positions. I also investigated the phenomenon by considering the why, how and which role they accentuated, as well as it affects and influences on their creative and teaching activities. By using a feminist theory, the research uncovered information on how gender may or may not affect their careers, as well as their identities.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018

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Cross-disciplinary collaboration between two science disciplines at a community college

Description

Health science students like students in many disciplines exhibit difficulty with transferring content from one course to another. For example, the problem explored in this study occurred when overlapping

Health science students like students in many disciplines exhibit difficulty with transferring content from one course to another. For example, the problem explored in this study occurred when overlapping concepts were presented in introductory biology and chemistry courses, but students could not transfer the concepts to the other disciplinary course. In this mixed method action research study, the author served as facilitator/leader of a group of colleagues tasked with investigating and taking steps to resolve this student learning transfer problem. This study outlines the details of how an interdisciplinary community of practice (CoP) formed between chemistry and biology faculty members at a community college to address the problem and the benefits resulting from the CoP. Quantitative and qualitative data were obtained from transcripts of meetings of the faculty members, notes from other formal and informal meetings, classroom visits, a questionnaire containing Likert and open-ended items and interviews. Transcripts, notes, and interviews were coded to determine common themes. Findings suggested the CoP was an effective means to deal with the matter of student transfer of content across courses. In particular, the CoP agreed to use similar terminology, created materials to be used consistently across the courses, and explored other transfer specific approaches that allowed for transfer of course content. Finally, the benefits of the CoP were due in large part to the collaboration that took place among participants.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2011

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Relationships among personal characteristics, self-efficacy, and conceptual knowledge of circuit analysis of community college engineering students

Description

Conceptual knowledge and self-efficacy are two research topics that are well-established at universities, however very little has been investigated about these at the community college. A sample of thirty-seven students

Conceptual knowledge and self-efficacy are two research topics that are well-established at universities, however very little has been investigated about these at the community college. A sample of thirty-seven students enrolled in three introductory circuit analysis classes at a large southwestern community college was used to answer questions about conceptual knowledge and self-efficacy of community college engineering students. Measures included a demographic survey and a pre/post three-tiered concept inventory to evaluate student conceptual knowledge of basic DC circuit analysis and self-efficacy for circuit analysis. A group effect was present in the data, so descriptive statistics were used to investigate the relationships among students' personal and academic characteristics and conceptual knowledge of circuit analysis. The a priori attribute approach was used to qualitatively investigate misconceptions students have for circuit analysis. The results suggest that students who take more credit hours score higher on a test of conceptual knowledge of circuit analysis, however additional research is required to confirm this, due to the group effect. No new misconceptions were identified. In addition to these, one group of students received more time to practice using the concepts. Consequently, that group scored higher on the concept inventory, possibly indicating that students who have extra practice time may score higher on a test of conceptual knowledge of circuit analysis. Correlation analysis was used to identify relationships among students' personal and academic characteristics and self-efficacy for circuit analysis, as well as to investigate the relationship between self-efficacy for circuit analysis and conceptual knowledge of circuit analysis. Subject's father's education level was found to be inversely correlated with self-efficacy for circuit analysis, and subject's age was found to be directly correlated with self-efficacy for circuit analysis. Finally, self-efficacy for circuit analysis was found to be positively correlated with conceptual knowledge of circuit analysis.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2014

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Determining persistence of community college students in introductory geology classes

Description

Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM) careers have been touted as critical to the success of our nation and also provide important opportunities for access and equity of underrepresented minorities

Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM) careers have been touted as critical to the success of our nation and also provide important opportunities for access and equity of underrepresented minorities (URM's). Community colleges serve a diverse population and a large number of undergraduates currently enrolled in college, they are well situated to help address the increasing STEM workforce demands. Geoscience is a discipline that draws great interest, but has very low representation of URM's as majors. What factors influence a student's decision to major in the geosciences and are community college students different from research universities in what factors influence these decisions? Through a survey-design mixed with classroom observations, structural equation model was employed to predict a student's intent to persist in introductory geology based on student expectancy for success in their geology class, math self-concept, and interest in the content. A measure of classroom pedagogy was also used to determine if instructor played a role in predicting student intent to persist. The targeted population was introductory geology students participating in the Geoscience Affective Research NETwork (GARNET) project, a national sampling of students in enrolled in introductory geology courses. Results from SEM analysis indicated that interest was the primary predictor in a students intent to persist in the geosciences for both community college and research university students. In addition, self-efficacy appeared to be mediated by interest within these models. Classroom pedagogy impacted how much interest was needed to predict intent to persist, in which as classrooms became more student centered, less interest was required to predict intent to persist. Lastly, math self-concept did not predict student intent to persist in the geosciences, however, it did share variance with self-efficacy and control of learning beliefs, indicating it may play a moderating effect on student interest and self-efficacy. Implications of this work are that while community college students and research university students are different in demographics and content preparation, student-centered instruction continues to be the best way to support student's interest in the sciences. Future work includes examining how math self-concept may play a role in longitudinal persistence in the geosciences.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2014

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Cooperative learning in a community college setting: developmental coursework in mathematics

Description

This action research study, set in a community college in the southwestern United States, was designed to investigate the effects of implementing cooperative learning strategies in a developmental mathematics course.

This action research study, set in a community college in the southwestern United States, was designed to investigate the effects of implementing cooperative learning strategies in a developmental mathematics course. Introductory algebra was formerly taught in a lecture based format, and as such regularly had a low course completion rate. To create a more engaging learning environment, formal and informal cooperative learning activities were integrated into the curriculum. Bandura's self-efficacy theory, Vygotsky's constructivist theory, and Deutsch's social interdependence theory guided this study. Qualitative and quantitative data were collected through pre and post self-efficacy surveys, semi-structured student interviews, student journal entries, class observations, focus groups, and pre and post mathematics assessments. Data were analyzed using a mixed methods approach. As a result of implementing cooperative learning practices as a part of my teaching, there was an increase in student attendance as well as a decrease in student withdrawal rates. Students were also more motivated to work with each other on mathematics homework outside of class sessions. There was a strong sense of community that I had not witnessed in previous courses that I have taught. Use of cooperative learning practices served as a vehicle to motivate students to work on their mathematics coursework with their peers. Keywords: cooperative learning, developmental mathematics, constructivism, social interdependence theory, self-efficacy, community college

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2013

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Individual and combined impact of institutional student support strategies on first-time, full-time, degree-seeking community college students

Description

Although U.S. rates of college enrollment among 18-24 year olds have reached historic highs, rates of degree completion have not kept pace. This is especially evident at community colleges, where

Although U.S. rates of college enrollment among 18-24 year olds have reached historic highs, rates of degree completion have not kept pace. This is especially evident at community colleges, where a disproportionate number of students from groups who, historically, have had low college-completion rates enroll. One way community colleges are attempting to address low completion rates is by implementing institutional interventions intended to increase opportunities for student engagement at their colleges. Utilizing logistic and linear regression analyses, this study focused on community college students, examining the association between participation in institutional support activities and student outcomes, while controlling for specific student characteristics known to impact student success in college. The sample included 746 first-time, full-time, degree-seeking students at a single community college located in the U.S. Southwest. Additional analyses were conducted for the 440 first-time, full-time, degree-seeking students in this sample who placed into at least one developmental education course. Findings indicate that significant associations exist between different types of participation in institutional interventions and various student outcomes: Academic advising was found to be related to increased rates of Fall to Spring and Fall to Fall persistence and, for developmental education students, participation in a student success course was found to be related to an increase in the proportion of course credit hours earned. The results of this study provide evidence that student participation in institutional-level support may relate to increased rates of college persistence and credit hour completion; however, additional inquiry is warranted to inform specific policy and program decision-making at the college and to determine if these findings are generalizable to populations outside of this college setting.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2011

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The invisible student: retaining minority males in the community college setting

Description

Disparities exist among minorities in educational a ttainment. The gap widens when examining access to higher education and persi stence rates among minority males as compared to their white counterparts

Disparities exist among minorities in educational a ttainment. The gap widens when examining access to higher education and persi stence rates among minority males as compared to their white counterparts and minorit y females. The purpose of this action research study was to explore the impact of a recip rocal mentoring model between faculty and minority male students in an effort to examine the effects on student persistence and the students' academic experience. The researcher attempted to examine mentoring relationships, the process of reciprocal mentoring, and the effects on persistence and the students' academic experience f or the purpose of learning about one another's perspectives. This study investigated min ority male persistence within Chandler-Gilbert Community College (CGCC). Persiste nce was defined as a student who enrolled during the fall 2013 academic semester and continued at the same institution or transferred to another two-year or four-year instit ution working on degree completion. The author used a mixed methods design and used Cri tical Race Theory (CRT) as the theoretical framework by which to examine issues pe rtaining to minority male student perspectives and experiences. The results yielded e ight assertions related to minority male retention and persistence.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2014