President Obama and industry groups have called on colleges to graduate 10,000 more engineers a year and 100,000 new teachers with majors in science, technology, engineering and math. However, studies find that roughly 40 percent of students planning engineering and science majors end up switching to other subjects or failing to get any degree.

In September, the Association of American Universities announced a five-year initiative to encourage faculty members in the STEM fields to use more interactive teaching techniques.

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