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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Supplemental instruction in STEM-related disciplines on a community college campus: A multivariate path-analytic approach
by Rabitoy, Eric, Ed.D., California State University, Fullerton, 2011, 255; 3459302
Abstract (Summary)

This study evaluated the impact of a community college Supplemental Instruction (SI) program on academic achievement. The research assessed the relationship between student demographics and academic preparation to factors related to student participation in SI and academic achievement in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM)-related curriculum.

The study evaluated an a priori model based on Astin's input, environment, outcome college impact model, utilizing a multivariate path analytic approach. Several input variables directly predicted academic success. Female students of color earned significantly lower final course grades and cumulative GPAs than did students not classified within this demographic. Both prior GPA and Math placement score predicted final course grade and final cumulative GPA for all students. Female students attended more SI sessions than did male students, and high GPA predicted increased SI attendance for all participants. Higher scores on the Math placement exam predicted decreased SI attendance.

Several statistically significant relationships existed between environment variables and academic achievement. For students of color, enrollment in a class section with an SI leader of color and or a faculty member of color predicted increased academic achievement. White students enrolled in a course section with a faculty member of color experienced increased SI attendance and a small increase in academic achievement. With the exception of White students, enrollment in a class section with a female SI leader predicted increased SI attendance. With the exception of male students, students enrolled in a course section with a White SI leader experienced increased SI attendance. Increased SI attendance positively predicted academic achievement for all participant groups but particularly so for students of color.

The results of the study provide researchers and practitioners with insight into the effective design, implementation, and evaluation of SI programs on community college campuses. These findings suggest that the gender and ethnicity of the student, faculty member, and SI leader have an impact on the SI environment for community college students enrolled in STEM curriculum. More importantly, the findings imply that the establishment of a diverse SI environment is critical to the success of the diversified student body that characterizes the community college system of today.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Person, Dawn
School: California State University, Fullerton
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-A 72/08, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Community college education, Higher Education Administration, Educational leadership, Higher education
Keywords: Community college, Gender differences, Higher education, Multivariate path analysis, SI, STEM, Supplemental instruction
Publication Number: 3459302
ISBN: 978-1-124-69791-8
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