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Abstract Title: Analysis of mathematics pathways through a Physics Major
Abstract: Most physics programs graduate very few students annually and improving these numbers is critical to both meeting societal needs for physics degree holders as well as for the long-term survival of physics departments. Understanding the pathways into, through, and out of a physics major is a necessary step toward improving retention of physics students to graduation. In this study, we investigate the pathways of physics students through their required math courses in the physics major. In our analysis a number of distinct pathways are identified leading to multiple outcomes ranging from successful completion of a degree in physics to attrition out of the university. Categorization of these pathways and the properties of students who take each path can be used to adapt the physics program to the needs of students with different academic backgrounds and identify areas of program weakness.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation
Session Time: Poster Session III
Poster Number: C101

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Cabot Zabriskie
West Virginia University
Co-Author(s)
and Co-Presenter(s)
John Stewart, West Virginia University
Seth DeVore, West Virginia University