Increase the percentage of graduates who major in high demand fields.
High demand fields offered at Augusta State University include the STEM disciplines of biology, chemistry, computer science, engineering, mathematics and physics, as well as nursing, secondary education certification in STEM fields, and the non-STEM fields of special education and applied information systems.
Recruit more high ability students in high demand majors.
Strategy 2.1.1: Increase and enhance marketing to attract majors in STEM and other high demand fields.
- Provide funding for website development in public relations.
- Revamp the university’s website to make it more visually appealing, functional, ADA compliant and convenient for prospective students.
- Create dynamic, interactive web content for STEM areas that showcases ASU’s physical facilities, research opportunities and other benefits for undergraduates.
- Expand the usage of social media tools to connect with current and prospective students in targeted academic disciplines and geographic locations in collaboration with the Office of Admissions and academic departments.
- Communicate the advantages of STEM, STEM education and high demand majors through creative and innovative marketing by funding new initiatives in online advertising that specifically targets prospective students in STEM-related and high demand fields and enhances the university’s image and brand as an undergraduate research institution.
- Increase the recruitment budget in order to purchase names of high ability high school students and to hire additional staff to make follow-up calls.
Strategy 2.1.2: Expand relationships with high schools and two-year colleges.
- Designate a staff member in the Office of Admissions to serve as the primary liaison between faculty in high demand fields and high school teachers.
- Designate at least one faculty liaison for student outreach in each department with STEM majors.
- Target alumni who are teachers in high demand fields at both local and regional high schools.
- Designate a staff member in the Office of Admissions to recruit students from two-year colleges and increase outreach efforts with transfer students in high demand fields.
- Increase opportunities for campus visitations focused on high demand fields for high ability students interested in these fields.
- Create summer professional learning seminars for high school teachers in STEM fields.
Strategy 2.1.3: Increase the availability of merit-based scholarships for majors in high demand fields.
- Hire staff with STEM-specific expertise to assist students in securing external STEM scholarship money.
- For students with outstanding academic credentials, where appropriate:
- Guarantee minimum scholarship support (beyond Hope or other financial aid).
- Provide the scholarship offer in the student’s official letter of acceptance.
- Guarantee on-campus employment.
- Work with the Office of Development and Alumni Relations to provide permanent ASU Foundation support for 40 STEM merit scholarships by 2015.
Retain more students in high demand majors from their first to second year and increase their progression toward graduation.
Strategy 2.2.1: Provide Supplemental Instruction in critical foundation courses.
- Designate sections of key “foundation” courses that will include Supplemental Instruction (SI). (BIOL 1107, 1108, 2111, 2112; CHEM 1151, 1152, 1211, 1212, 3411, 3412; CSCI 1301, 1302; MATH 1113, 2011, 2012; PHYS 1111, 1112, 2211, 2212).
Supplemental Instruction (SI) is an academic assistance program that utilizes peer-assisted study sessions. SI sessions are regularly-scheduled, informal review sessions in which students compare notes, discuss readings, develop organizational tools, and predict test items. Students learn how to integrate course content and study skills while working together. The sessions are facilitated by “SI leaders”, students who have previously done well in the course and who attend all class lectures, take notes, and act as model students. … SI is a non remedial approach to learning as the program targets high-risk courses rather than high-risk students. (Definition from the SI website of the University of Missouri – Kansas City at http://www.umkc.edu/cad/si/overview.shtml)
Strategy 2.2.2: Increase tutoring in critical foundation courses.
- Provide training and support for student tutors.
- Utilize formalized, discipline-specific programs in addition to traditional drop-in tutoring.
Develop new programs in high demand majors.
Strategy 2.3.1: Provide more support for pre-engineering programs.
- Designate a faculty member to serve as a pre-engineering coordinator and advisor.
- Provide additional course sections, as necessary, in PHYS 2211, 2212; MATH 2011, MATH 2012, 2013, 3020, 3280; and CHEM 1211, 1212.
- Develop a 3-2 program with Georgia Tech where students study for 3 years at ASU and 2 years at Georgia Tech and graduate with a dual degree in Physics and Engineering.
- Explore opportunities to develop a 3-2 with other engineering schools.