More than 70% of students who enrolled at Normandale Community College in 2009 tested into a remedial level math class. The high percentage of students testing into developmental math is a concern for several reasons. Because students must complete these remedial classes before continuing on with other degree program courses, it prolongs their degree program. It is also an additional cost to students as they must pay for these remedial courses like any other program course. Finally, according to Normandale Community College staff, 50% of the teaching being conducted in the math department at the college is currently focused on developmental mathematics. The staff time and resources spent on planning, preparing, and teaching remedial math courses could be redirected to college level courses or electives if the percentage of students needing remedial instruction decreased.
The purpose of this study was to analyze student data to better understand the contributing factors to the high percentage of incoming students testing into remedial level math courses. CAREI researchers found statistically significant correlations between high school performance and MCA II test results, as well as with ACCUPLACER scores. Not surprisingly, the last course taken and the year it was taken are important factors. Full details are available in the report.
Investigational partners: Bloomington Public Schools and Normandale Community College.
Wahlstrom, Kyla; Peterson, Kristin; Angermeyr, James; Biel, Shirley; Gust, Linda; Guelich, Julie.
Math Readiness of Incoming Students at Normandale Community College.
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