Developing recruitment and retention strategies through "Design4Practice" curriculum enhancements

John T. Tester, David Scott, Jerry Hatfield, Rand Decker, Fonda Swimmer

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Northern Arizona University's (NAU) College of Engineering and Technology (CET) has an energetic program to identify pre-degree student populations, bring educational resources to these populations to enable recruitment into the NAU CET learning environment, and retain these students throughout the CET degree programs through graduation. The program, the Engineering Talent Pipeline, builds upon the student-oriented Multicultural Engineering Program (MEP) and the "Design4Practice" (D4P) design curriculum. A study was undertaken to understand successful recruitment and retention efforts of other universities, in order to apply the best practices to the D4P curriculum. This paper will primarily address the information gathered from best practices research that lead to our current D4P curriculum enhancement efforts. The D4P courses provide all engineering majors with interdisciplinary, team-based design projects throughout their four-year program. Also determined were evaluation metrics that demonstrate improvement in recruitment and retention; these metrics were considered for integration into the assessment reports associated with the future curriculum enhancements. We present our findings of the above activities and preliminary strategies for enhancing those D4P courses which most impact our recruitment and retention: The freshman and sophomore design courses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)T3E-18-T3E-23
JournalProceedings - Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE
StatePublished - 2004
Event34th Annual Frontiers in Education: Expanding Educational Opportunities Through Partnerships and Distance Learning - Conference Proceedings, FIE - Savannah, GA, United States
Duration: Oct 20 2004Oct 23 2004


  • Design education
  • Engineering education
  • Student retention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Education
  • Computer Science Applications


Dive into the research topics of 'Developing recruitment and retention strategies through "Design4Practice" curriculum enhancements'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this