Academic Outcomes for CSUSM STEM Students
Student Artist: Sean Paget
Course: Data Visualization with Lucy HG Solomon
Research: Kim Greene, CSUSM Academic Success Coach
The tree graphs represent student outcomes for students who fit the “Under Represented Minority” status and those who did not, (right and left respectively). Each level in the graph represents two terms. The nodes to the left of the center line represent those who did not enroll after the previous terms and the nodes to the right of the center line represented those who graduated. The distance from the center line is scaled according to that statistic’s distance from the maximum value.
I used the following CSV formatted statistics provided by the Office of Academic Outcomes at CSUSM.
2011,All CSM URM,106,0,88,18,73,33,68,38,59,43,4
E – still enrolled in any major
SM – still enrolled in the entry major (or majors)
SC – still enrolled in CSM but in a different major
OC – still enrolled but in a different college
G – graduated
GM – graduated in the entry major or majors
OMG – graduated in a CSM major but not the entry major(s)
OCG – graduated from a different college
NE – not enrolled
For my process, I started by contacting the academic outcomes office on campus and academic coach Kim Greene. She supplied me with a spreadsheet listing the break down for all students enrolled, graduated or transfered who had selected a STEM major. The spreadsheet also contains a break down for underrepresented minority students. Kim Greene indicated that she was interested in a comparison between STEM majors who fit into the underrepresented minority status and those who did not.
I have a predisposition for graphing data, so I decided that I wanted my final to take the form of a graph. However, I also felt that the form of the graph should represent the fact that the students under consideration are in effect carving a path through their lives. I felt that a good way to represent this is with a tree style graph. I then selected a subset of the data by removing everything that didn’t reflect 2011. I felt that my project would work better with a reduced subset and 2011 was latest term available with enough terms to complete a degree.
My goal was to show a comparison between students who fit into the category of underrepresented minority and those who did not based on how many graduated or stayed enrolled in their majors. I did this by placing visually distinct objects at each point in the graph were a status could be. The center indicates being enrolled, the left indicates being not enrolled and the right indicates graduating. The x distance of a node from the center of the tree is determined by how that statistic compares to the maximum statistic. What I found is that out of all of the students who enrolled in 2011 and selected a STEM major, very few graduated after 5 terms whether or not they were considered to within the category of underrepresented minority.