BullsEye Mentoring Program

Engineering Identity

Engineering identity is used as a framework to plan, implement, and analyze Bulls-EYE Mentoring activities. Identity is an important component to study in the context of engineering for three reasons: (1) it affects the student’s learning experience, (2) it influences student’s level of engagement with the subject matter, and (3) it informs emerging and “possible selves” (Cobb, 2004; Markus & Nurius, 1986).

As such, research will use a conceptual framework comprised of the following dimensions:

  • Intrinsic psychological and behavioral motivation to study engineering (Capobianco et al., 2015; Douglas et al., 2014; Sheppard et al., 2010)
  • Engineering knowledge, skills, and competencies (Stevens et al., Meyers et al., 2012)
  • Presence of meaningful interpersonal relationships: This dimension will examine positive experiences with faculty, peers, mentors, and sponsors (Fleming et al., 2013; Lane, 2015; 2016).
  • Environmental and cultural influences of engineering identity development: This dimension will examine the following: cultural processes (Tonso, 2006), engineering role modeling (Revelo, 2015), sense of belonging (Tonso, 2006), the outcomes from engaging in a “rites-of-passage” ceremony (Fleming et al., 2013; Matusovich et al., 2011), attributes specific to social identities (e.g., gender, race, ethnicity) (Fleming et al., 2013; Lane, 2015; 2016, Revelo, 2015), fortified commitment to the community (Revelo, 2015), nurturing of an engineering family or community (Revelo, 2015).

Each component of Bulls-EYE Mentoring is structured in a way that simultaneously addresses each facet of this framework. Table 3 summarizes research constructs, measure, and reliability/validity to better understand these dimensions

Bullseye Graphic