Universidad de Burgos (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2021 Proceedings
Publication year: 2021
Pages: 5665-5671
ISBN: 978-84-09-34549-6
ISSN: 2340-1095
doi: 10.21125/iceri.2021.1278
Conference name: 14th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 8-9 November, 2021
Location: Online Conference
The low rate of students that pass the subjects in the first year of a technical degree raises the need to implement levelling courses for first-year university students. Nowadays, most universities do not offer it. However, it leads to a decreasing in the fresh-men level. This lack of knowledge makes students have a greater perception of the difficulty of the subject, leading in some cases to the student giving it up or having to seek external help in private academies or private teachers.

In this work, the results of a study carried out on first-year undergraduate students are presented. Through anonymous surveys conducted at the end of the academic year, the intention is to know the degree of difficulty that students encounter in common subjects in technical degrees. The students who carry out the survey study are from 10 technical degrees and double degrees of Escuela Politecnica Superior of the Universidad de Burgos, with a high number of responses, over 220. The questions pretended to know the subjects in which the first-year undergraduate students had the perception of more difficulty than expected. Also, to plan strategies to improve learning, and therefore the success rate of degrees. In addition to reducing the number of students who give up subjects.

The results show that the perception of difficulty by the students is directly related to its lack of prior knowledge towards the subjects analysed. In particular, it is worth highlighting the calculus and algebra subjects, where most of the students affirm that the degree of difficulty is higher than expected. In addition, to having an insufficient level of prior knowledge. Physics and computer science are the subjects that follow the degree of difficulty since more than a third of the surveyed students consider that they have insufficient prior knowledge. Given the results, it is concluded that it would be recommendable to implement reinforcement courses before the beginning of the academic year or during the first weeks. These courses should be voluntary and also not extended too long so that the student does not increase his workload.
Levelling course, perception of difficulty, first-year undergraduate students, technical degrees.