Underrepresented engineering college student academic achievement through self -regulated learning behaviors
This investigation examined if high- and low-achieving minority engineering college students used self-regulated learning strategies while studying science, engineering, and mathematics. Thirty students interviewed and responded to learning contexts related to these subjects. The research design was modeled after Zimmerman's and Martinez-Pons' 1986 structured interview format. High achievers reported use of more self-regulated learning strategies than low achievers when taking chemistry tests, writing chemistry lab procedures, completing mathematics homework, and taking calculus tests. This study suggests that engineering students use self-regulated learning strategies and that high achievers use more learning strategies than low achievers.
The analysis revealed that learning contexts were the most important feature in differentiating group membership for high and low achievers. Group membership was determined by classifying students across all contexts by strategies used. Nine strategies were used in four contexts. The strategies were: goal setting and planning, seeking the professor's assistance, seeking TA assistance, seeking information, keeping records and monitoring, seeking peer assistance, reviewing notes, reviewing texts and reviewing tests.
Of the 653 strategies used overall, high achievers used 429 (66%) and low achievers used 224 (34%). Of the nine strategies used, seeking assistance, utilizing notes, and reviewing text were the most frequent approaches used for high achievers. These findings were similar to those noted by Zimmerman in his work with high school students, where he determined that help-seeking from others was determined to be important to academic performance. It also should be noted that the interview protocol adapted from Zimmerman's study is a reliable instrument to gather evidence on engineering students' academic achievement.
0745: Higher education