Transfer students in undergraduate engineering

Harriet Hartman, Stephanie Lezotte, Ralph Alan Dusseau, Tiago Forin, Stephanie Farrell

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Transfer students to four-year colleges often face considerable obstacles to college success, including a lack of adequate socialization to the new setting, academic preparation in terms of practical knowledge, and college climate norms. In addition, they may find it difficult to integrate into the informal social groups that have already formed among students who started their program as first-year students. These challenges are often complicated by lower socioeconomic status and first-generation college student status. For the most part, transfer students carry these challenges as invisible minority marks. As such, they may share with other minority statuses a sense of otherness from the mainstream college student, and consequent obstacles to self-confidence and -efficacy, weaker academic achievement, uncertainty of future plans in their majors, and a weaker sense of being part of the (student) community in their major. Engineering students are not an exception, and successful achievement of an undergraduate degree in engineering may hinge on finding an inclusive and welcoming climate as well as nurturing professors and students. The current study focuses on transfer students in engineering at a public university in the MidAtlantic. The data are drawn from a baseline survey about the climate for diversity and inclusion administered to all engineering college students in the Fall of 2016 and repeated mid-year 2018-9. Suggested supports for transfer students are discussed in the paper's conclusions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1443
JournalASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - Jun 22 2020
Event2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference, ASEE 2020 - Virtual, Online
Duration: Jun 22 2020Jun 26 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering


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