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Abstract Title: Changing pedagogy to help traditionally under-served populations
Abstract: We collaborated with our university's office of institutional research to assess pedagogical changes in our calculus-based introductory physics courses using different sets of student data.  We found that switching to a competency-based grading system in these classes reduced the drop/fail/withdrawal rates and course-associated grade penalties of under-represented minority, first generation, and female students.  We separately performed a longitudinal study to identify how changing the curriculum of these physics courses affected student performance in downstream engineering courses.  We found that increasing the calculus content in introductory physics correlated with higher grades earned in subsequent engineering courses, and that these downstream benefits were largest for students with lower math abilities.  Taken together, these results demonstrate how instructors can use educational data sets to make improvements in their courses that specifically target improving the performance and retention of traditionally underserved populations.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation
Session Time: Poster Session I
Poster Number: 1.C5

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Christopher Fischer
University of Kansas
Lawrence, KS 66045
Phone: 785-864-4579
and Co-Presenter(s)
Jennifer Delgado, University of Kansas
Sarah Rush, University of Kansas
Matt Richard, University of Kansas