Freshman retention in an engineering and technology department

Brian DeJong, Kumar Yelamarthi

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


This paper presents the results of an in-depth study of one-year retention rates for freshman engineering students in the Engineering & Technology (ET) department at Central Michigan University. The ET department is a distinct collaboration of engineering, engineering technology, and technology programs, offering eight majors including the newly added mechanical and electrical engineering. The freshman engineering course consistently draws high enrollment, but the retention of these students to the second-year engineering courses is an unusually low 26%. Furthermore, the data shows that these unretained students are not choosing the (less-math-intensive) engineering technology or technology programs, as anticipated. This paper discusses these findings, as well as retention rates versus math level, course grade, and cumulative GPA, and the majors declared by the unretained students. This analysis has shown avenues for improving the freshman engineering course.

Original languageEnglish
JournalASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - 2009
Event2009 ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition - Austin, TX, United States
Duration: Jun 14 2009Jun 17 2009


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