The Gendered Effect of Cooperative Education, Contextual Support, and Self-Efficacy on Undergraduate Retention

TitleThe Gendered Effect of Cooperative Education, Contextual Support, and Self-Efficacy on Undergraduate Retention
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsRaelin, JA, Bailey, MB, Hamann, J, Pendleton, LK, Reisberg, R, Whitman, DL
JournalJournal of Engineering Education
Date Published2014
Publication Languageeng
ISBN Number10694730
KeywordsAcademic , COLLEGE , cooperative , ENGINEERING , gender , research , SELF-efficacy , student , UNDERGRADUATES
AbstractBackground Longstanding data have established that women earn about 20% of undergraduate degrees in engineering; they also have lower academic self-efficacy in the science, technology, engineering, and math fields than do men. This study examines these findings through a longitudinal design that explores whether cooperative education (co-op) can improve the retention of women (and men) in their undergraduate studies. Purpose This study examines the effect on retention of demographic characteristics, cooperative education, contextual support, and three dimensions of self-efficacy - work, career, and academic - and their change over time. It incorporates longitudinal measures and a data check at the end of the students' fifth year. The findings verified the study's pathways model. Academic achievement and academic self-efficacy, as well as contextual support in the case for women, in all time periods were critical to retention. Work self-efficacy, developed by students between their second and fourth years, was also an important factor in retention, although it was strongly tied to the students' participation in co-op programs. Higher retention was associated with an increased number of co-ops completed by students. Conclusion Relationships between work self-efficacy and co-op participation and between academic self-efficacy and academic achievement play a critical role in retention for both male and female students. 
NotesRaelin, Joseph A. 1 Bailey, Margaret B. 2 Hamann, Jerry 3 Pendleton, Leslie K. 4 Reisberg, Rachelle 1 Whitman, David L. 3; Affiliation: 1: Northeastern University 2: Rochester Institute of Technology 3: University of Wyoming 4: Virginia Tech; Source Info: Oct2014, Vol. 103 Issue 4, p599; Subject Term: COLLEGE dropouts -- Prevention; Subject Term: RESEARCH; Subject Term: GENDER differences in education -- Research; Subject Term: COOPERATIVE education -- Research; Subject Term: UNDERGRADUATES; Subject Term: ENGINEERING students; Subject Term: SELF-efficacy in students; Subject Term: ACADEMIC achievement; Author-Supplied Keyword: cooperative education; Author-Supplied Keyword: self-efficacy; Author-Supplied Keyword: student retention; Number of Pages: 26p; Document Type: Article