STEM UP: A STEM Undergraduate Program to Help Middle School Youth Select STEM Majors and Careers through Cognitive Apprenticeship
AuthorRischard, Kyla Alexandra
AdvisorLegg Burross, Heidi
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis study examined how middle school students planned to obtain future STEM college majors and careers through a possible selves curriculum in a 13-week, in-school cognitive apprenticeship model. STEM undergraduates mentored STEM-interested middle school mentees (N= 21) from six under-served middle schools. Through possible selves activities, mentees worked on strategies to avoid becoming their feared possible self and become their hoped-for possible self. In the middle of the semester, mentee self-reported competency in STEM fields, motivation, administrator-reported STEM course grades, and STEM attendance were collected. On average, mentees felt 10.67% more motivated to pursue STEM than they felt competent in STEM. Mentees who reported higher competency tended to have higher course grades, and mentees who reported higher motivation tended to have higher attendance, although attendance was high overall, indicating insufficient sample size or variance to demonstrate significance. Mentees who attended class more tended to have a higher course grade but the same statistical issue occurred in that there may not have been a significant correlation due to sampling and self- selection biases. The majority of mentees identified unrelated possible selves, defined concrete self-improvement and abstract self-maintenance strategies, identified self-discipline as a requirement in middle school, described intellectual independence and teacher harmony strategies to solve everyday problems in middle school, identified instructivist college requirements, described responsibility as a transferable strategy, and dependence on an expert as a nontransferable strategy to solve long-term problems in college to obtain their STEM possible self.
Degree ProgramGraduate College