– Lower levels of mathematics anxiety, higher levels of mathematics courses completed in high school, positive teacher experiences, and multiple instances of exposure to STEM fields while in middle and high school increased the likelihood that students would choose a STEM major.
– Lower levels of mathematics anxiety and being placed into higher-ability mathematics courses in middle and high school correlated with higher levels of mathematics self-efficacy.
– Higher levels of mathematics self-efficacy in middle and high school led to increased instances of pursuing a STEM career.
– Students enrolled in at least Calculus I while in high school were significantly more likely to choose a STEM major in college.
– Interviews revealed a larger percentage of STEM majors indicating positive mathematics teacher experiences than non-STEM majors.
Can learning communities boost success of women and minorities in STEM? Evidence from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
– Author finds no statistically signiﬁcant eﬀects on academic outcomes for ESG enrollees generally, but women who participate in the program have higher GPAs and complete more credits of coursework.
– Minority students are more likely to major in math, computer science, or electrical engineering after participating in the ESG program.
– Though quite noisy, the results are suggestive that women and minorities in STEM may beneﬁt from learning communities.
– Author ﬁnds evidence that female instructors are particularly beneﬁcial for female students at MIT. However, the magnitude of the estimates suggests that the gender-mix of ESG instructors cannot account for most of the academic eﬀects the author observes for female students.
Macrosystem Analysis of Programs and Strategies to Increase Underrepresented Populations in the Geosciences
– Key approaches identified in the literature to advance participation of underrepresented populations in the geosciences include: mentoring, peer support networks and community building, bridge programs, pedagogies, undergraduate research experiences, institutional climate and culture, specific geoscience education programs.
– In mentorship of underrepresented students, interactions of minority students with their research mentor can result in increased likelihood of graduate school pursuit and in choosing a career in scientific research.
– A faculty member’s commitment to fostering the student’s academic success results in positive mentor relationship outcomes regardless of the racial similarity between mentor and mentee.
– As it pertains to the geosciences in particular, positive student outcomes of mentoring have been demonstrated in geoscience-specific programs.
– Macrosystem perspectives of peer support networks and community building efforts play an important role in fostering student engagement and retention in STEM majors and positive student outcomes.
– Many positive student outcomes are associated with bridge programs, including increased interest in the geosciences, relationship building between student and faculty members, development of research skills, knowledge gained regarding careers in STEM and the geosciences, knowledge gained about the college application process, and increased self-efficacy.
This study was designed to elucidate
why students from backgrounds of
lower socio-economic status (SES) and who
may be first in their family (FIF) to enter
university continue to be under-represented in