Examining first-year chemistry outcomes of underprepared STEM students who completed a STEM summer academic bridge program
This NSF S-STEM Grantee poster examines the results of Rice University's summer science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) bridge program, the Rice Emerging Scholars Program (RESP), on participants' introductory chemistry grades in a quasi-experimental design that compared performance of participants in RESP, a control group with similar preparation as RESP participants, and the remaining students in the class. The outcome of interest was first and second-semester chemistry exam performance. The researchers also examined performance on first-semester exam items that directly tested concepts taught in RESP versus concepts that were not taught during the program, as well as class grade distribution by group for both first and second-semester chemistry. Results showed that engaging in RESP enhanced performance on items that directly assessed content taught in the program but did not significantly improve performance on items not taught in RESP. However, the proportion of students in RESP earning As and Bs was no different from other students in the class during the first semester. Although not all results were significant, trends in the data point to the promise of RESP. Implications for near and far learning transfer as a result of program participation are discussed.
Bradford, B; Beier, ME; Saterbak, A; McSpedon, M; Wolf, M; Kincaid, K
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