Members of the DPC Coordination and Evaluation Center published an article in the journal, Research in Higher Education, titled “BUILDing an Early Advantage: An Examination of the Role of Strategic Interventions in Developing First-Year Undergraduate Students’ Science Identity.” The authors are Kevin Eagan, PhD, Ana Romero, PhD, and Shujin Zhong, PhD.
The article can be accessed openly through Springer Link.
Abstract: The federal government and a number of nonprofit, non-governmental agencies have invested heavily in programs designed to provide research opportunities, financial support, and mentorship to undergraduates in science-related fields. These efforts are aimed at supporting students' matriculation in science majors and into science-related careers. This study used a quasi-experimental design to examine whether college students who participate in a federally sponsored intervention program develop significantly stronger science identities in their first year of college compared to their peers who do not participate in the intervention. Results suggest intervention participants develop significantly stronger science identities compared to their counterparts in the control group, but these benefits are somewhat mitigated after controls for mentoring enter the model.
Citation: Eagan, M.K., Romero, A.L. & Zhong, S. BUILDing an Early Advantage: An Examination of the Role of Strategic Interventions in Developing First-Year Undergraduate Students’ Science Identity. Res High Educ (2023). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11162-023-09745-8
Xavier University of Louisiana’s Project Pathways program is offering their Preparing Mentors and Advisors at Xavier (P-MAX) course to the broader public.
P-MAX Online is a free, self-paced course designed within Xavier’s learning management system and takes approximately six to eight hours to complete.
The P-MAX program was originally modeled after the Entering Mentoring Program developed at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and has since been significantly modified to fit the needs and culture of Xavier.
Launched in July 2022, P-MAX Online was designed by the team at Xavier’s Center for the Advancement of Teaching and Faculty Development (CAT+FD) using national standards and best practices for online learning.
P-MAX Online is designed to provide participants with the knowledge and skills needed to enhance mentoring, and advising of undergraduate students, especially those engaged in research.
Lorenzo Ramirez, recent graduate of San Francisco State University (SFSU) and SF BUILD alum, authored his first academic article and it was published in the journal Nature Communications. The article, titled “Genetic manipulation of the human gut bacterium Eggerthella lenta reveals a widespread family of transcriptional regulators,” sheds light on immunological mechanisms and drug design for heart failure medication.
Read more about his research in Nature Communications.
Ramirez graduated from SFSU in 2022 with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry. As an SF BUILD scholar, he trained in the lab of Peter Turnbaugh, PhD, to research immunological mechanisms compromising heart failure medication efficacy and identifying targets to improve drug design and accessibility. Ramirez continues his research in the Turnbaugh lab as a junior specialist while he prepares to apply to MD/PhD programs.
Read “Faculty mentor training to change mentoring practices at a diverse R2 university,” authored by members of the CSULB BUILD team. The article shares results from the Advancing Inclusive Mentoring (AIM) Program.
The article can be accessed through PubMed.
Abstract: The Advancing Inclusive Mentoring (AIM) Program was created to share best practices in inclusive and positive mentoring with faculty members who work with undergraduate or graduate students on independent research, scholarly, or creative works across disciplines. This hybrid program contains 35 online episodes within six modules and is complemented by six facilitated group discussion sessions. Participants’ viewing behaviors and responses to a post-program survey were assessed. Results showed that the AIM program was beneficial, useful, and engaging to participants. Furthermore, the program increased the participants’ knowledge base and relevant mentoring skills for serving diverse and underrepresented students.
Citation: Young, K. A., Marayong, P., & Vu, K-P. L. (2022). Faculty mentor training to change mentoring practices at a diverse R2 university. Journal on Excellence in College Teaching, 33(4), 105-132.
Read “Is science identity a predictor or an outcome of learning research skills? Analyses of evaluation data from a training program to enhance research career preparation of diverse undergraduate students,” authored by members of the CSULB BUILD team and published in the International Journal of Research in Education and Science.
The article can be downloaded from the journal’s website.
Abstract: This study examined the role of science identity in a two-year upper-division research training program that prepares diverse undergraduate students for a research career. Using the annual year-end student evaluation data, we examined whether science identity is a predictor or an outcome of learning that enhances career preparation in biomedical research. Results showed that science identity is a predictor of learning in our trainees. In general, students with stronger science identity at the end of Year 2 reported having acquired more research skills and experiences through the program. This finding demonstrates that science identity makes learning research skills meaningful and purposeful. Preliminary analyses also showed that the levels of science identity did not differ between Years 1 and 2. In fact, science identity approached the maximum possible scores in both years. These findings imply that the training program could have succeeded in bolstering participants’ science identity early by the end of the first year. Our findings do not rule out the possibility that science identity is both a predictor and an outcome of learning, depending on the specific contexts of learning as well as learners’ specific developmental phases. Further studies are needed to systematically test these and other possibilities.
Citation: Masunaga, H., Chun, C.-A., & Vu, K.-P. L. (2023). Is science identity a predictor or an outcome of learning research skills? Analyses of evaluation data from a training program to enhance research career preparation of diverse undergraduate students. International Journal of Research in Education and Science (IJRES), 9(2), 266-282.
SPAD & DPC DaTA
The Diversity Program Consortium Coordination and Evaluation Center at UCLA is supported by Office of the Director of the National Institutes of Health / National Institutes of General Medical Sciences under award number U54GM119024.