The increased demand for qualified STEM workers, necessitates addressing the bachelor’s science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) degree achievement among African Americans and other underrepresented populations. Using inquiry derived from Harper’s (2010) Anti-Deficit Achievement Framework, this study sought to explore the factors that contribute to the successful degree completion of African American STEM students within a large comprehensive university system. Coding of the twelve semi-structured interviews revealed six major themes: a) K-12/precollege educational experiences, b) motivation to complete a STEM degree, c) systems of social support, d) extracurricular activities and out-of-class experiences, e) addressing stereotyping and discrimination, and f) faculty behaviors and dispositions. All themes were intertwined at each phase of participants’ academic careers, thereby, highlighting the complexity of this population’s experience and what is needed to address their low STEM degree attainment. Findings indicated that this student population benefits from positive, sustained faculty-student interactions, holistic STEM success programming, and genuine networks of social support. Furthermore, Harper’s framework can be modified to explore the motivation of African American STEM students as well as the African American student’s relationship with disability support services.
|Advisor:||Locks, Angela M.|
|Commitee:||Bonous-Hammarth, Marguerite, McCallum, Carmen, Roy, Roudi|
|School:||California State University, Long Beach|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||MAI 56/05M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Mathematics education, African American Studies, Counseling Psychology, Science education, Higher education|
|Keywords:||African American/Black, Engineering, Mathematics, Persistence, Retention, STEM, Technology, science|
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