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Developmental mathematics education *policies at Kansas's community colleges

Teresa Aileen Muller, University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Abstract

This research compared the policies governing developmental mathematics education programs at thirteen community colleges in the state of Kansas with student's success in developmental mathematics courses. Particularly, this study sought to determine what policies had the greatest positive effect on students' success in developmental mathematics courses. ^ The research design was two-phased. The first consisted of a survey of developmental mathematics education instructional leaders to examine their colleges' policies and collect data on student performance and persistence rates in developmental mathematics courses. Thirteen developmental mathematics education instructional leaders from Kansas's community colleges were surveyed. The community colleges surveyed had student enrollments ranging from 1064 to 7745 students, with 4285 students enrolled in developmental mathematics courses (Kansas Board of Regents, 2002). ^ The second phase of the study consisted of interviewing three developmental mathematics instructional leaders from three different community colleges with high success rates among their developmental mathematics students. These success rates were derived from analysis of the student performance and persistence data collected in the surveys. Seventy-four percent of the developmental mathematics students enrolled in the fall of 1999 and the spring of 2000 at these three community colleges were successful in their developmental mathematics courses. ^ The results of the study demonstrated the need for mandatory assessment and placement in developmental mathematics courses. Proper placement through mandatory placement policies and good counseling were vital to student success in developmental mathematics courses. Mandatory placement policies should not be waived. ^ This study found that policies alone would not guarantee student success in developmental mathematics courses. Two other elements that increased students' success in developmental mathematics courses was the utilization of academic support centers and the developmental mathematics instructors' commitment to developmental mathematics students. The academic support centers, which include tutoring and computerized instruction, were essential components to facilitate student success. Community colleges need to make a commitment to their developmental mathematics students in order to increase students' opportunities for success. ^

Subject Area

Education, Community College|Education, Mathematics|Education, Curriculum and Instruction

Recommended Citation

Muller, Teresa Aileen, "Developmental mathematics education *policies at Kansas's community colleges" (2002). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3064170.
http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/dissertations/AAI3064170

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