Administrator's Perspectives of COVID-19 on STEM Student's Engagement

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Dr. Angela White, Biology, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University

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Publication Date

Spring 4-2021


This qualitative research study examines administrators’ perceptions of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) students’ motivation and engagement in undergraduate STEM-focused learning environments. During the infancy and intermediate stages of the pandemic, STEM administrators played a key role in both faculty and students’ transition to remote teaching and learning; therefore, they were able to gain insight regarding the pandemic’s impact through multiple lenses. Semi-structured interviews with thirteen STEM administrators from five universities in the United States captured the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on student motivation and engagement. Transcripts from the interviews were analyzed and codes were synthesized to form two themes: (1) Fatigued and Frustrated and (2) Disappearing Act(ivities). Changes in students’ motivation were reflected in lower performance STEM courses and a decline in laboratory engagement.

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