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Motivation blockers of first year Mechanical Engineering students at the Fontys University of Applied Sciences

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Motivation blockers of first year Mechanical Engineering students at the Fontys University of Applied Sciences

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Samenvatting

Before the start and during the first weeks of their first year, it has been observed by teachers
that engineering students start with a high level of motivation, which often seems to decrease
during the course of the first semesters. Such a decrease in motivation can be a main driver
for students dropping out of University early. A qualitative research will be carried out to
answer the main questions that have been raised within the engineering department of the
Fontys University of Applied sciences: to what extent does a decrease in the motivation of
first-year students exists, exactly when during the course of the first year does this decrease
occur and what are the underlying reasons causing this decline in motivation? Gaining more
insight in the motivation drop of students could result in modifications to the curriculum. The
final objectives are reducing the dropout level of students in the first year and increasing the
quality level of young propaedeutics. In [1] and [2] studies are carried out to measure
student’s motivation constructs, which have been carried out for first year Engineering
students. The authors describe a certain level of motivation drop for first year students at an
Engineering University. In Geraedts 2010 [3] it is defined that Maslow rules for students can
be seen as an element of a student’s perception onto his or hers education. Often it can be
observed that in most cases undergraduates start their education as an unconscious
insufficient competent student having a very limited view on the work arena and complexity
of the engineering discipline. Quickly after the start of the education year this view develops
into a more defined perception of what the content and complexity of the future work field is
and what is expected of the student during his or hers education. It is hypothesised that this
gain in insights of the student into the work field and the related expectations is a significant
contributor to the decline of intrinsic motivation. In this paper the investigated hypothesis and
possible other aspects that influence the motivation of students will be presented. Based on
results, potential corrective and preventive measures will be defined and discussed. Corrective
and predictive measures depend on the results of this study and could be aimed for instance
at: 1) making adjustments to the content and/or structure of the first semester curriculum, 2)
improving the support of students in making adaptations into a better learning strategy and 3)
improve the information on-which students decide to start a mechanical engineering
education. This paper will focus on the first year mechanical engineering students of the
Fontys University of Applied Sciences. About 100 first year students will be questioned using
predefined questionnaires and additionally 20 of them will be interviewed for validation.
References
[1] Brett D. Jones, Marie C. Paretti, Serge F. Hein, Tamarra W. Knott, An analysis of
Motivation Constructs with first-Year Engineering students, Journal of Engineering
Education; Oct 2010; 99, 4; Research Library pg. 319
[2] L. Benson, A Kirn, B. Morkos, CAREER: Student Motivation and Learning in
Engineering, 120th ASEE annual conference & Exposition June 2013
[3] HGM Geraedts (2010) Innovative learning for innovation ISBN 978-90-5284-624-8 4751

Toon meer
Trefwoorden
OrganisatieFontys Hogescholen
OpleidingWerktuigbouwkunde
AfdelingFontys Hogeschool Engineering
Fontys Hogeschool Techniek en Logistiek
Datum2015-06-29
TypeArtikel
TaalEngels

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