The First Day


  • 101 Things You Can Do The First Three Weeks of Class
    The list of “101 Things You Can Do…” is offered in the spirit of starting off right. It is a catalog of suggestions for college teachers who are looking for fresh ways of creating the best possible environment for learning. Not just the first day, but the first three weeks of a course are especially important, studies say, in retaining capable students. Even if the syllabus is printed and lecture notes are ready to go in August, most college teachers can usually make adjustments in teaching methods as the course unfolds and the characteristics of their students become known.

Developmental Education

  • Research in Developmental Education
    National Study of Developmental Education II: Baseline Data for Community Colleges. Published by Appalachian State University. 

    Open access to higher education has been a priority for community colleges in the United States since the 1960s (Cohen & Brawer, 2003). According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), nearly all community colleges and many universities offer developmental education courses for the purpose of preparing students who would likely otherwise be unable to complete a higher education program of study (NCES, 2003). Developmental education is of particular concern to community colleges, where the majority of developmental students are enrolled (McCabe, 2002). Until the 1990s, however, there was little information available to describe the demographics of developmental education and evaluate the efficacy of its efforts.
  • Remediation in the Community College: An Evaluator's Perspective
    Remediation is the most common approach to preparing students academically and socially during their early stages of college. However, despite its profound importance and its significant costs, there is very little rigorous research analyzing its effectiveness. The goal of this article is to provide a conceptual framework for the evaluation of remedial education programs. Based on previous literature, we review a list of ingredients for successful interventions, present a number of approaches to remediation that make use of these ingredients, discuss alternative research designs for systematic evaluations, and enumerate basic data requirements.
  • Data PointsRemedial Courses at Community Colleges
  • Referral, enrollment, and completion in developmental education sequences in community colleges
    Many students entering community colleges are referred to one or more levels of developmental education. Until now, there has been little research on student progression through multiple levels of developmental education and into entry-level college courses. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the patterns and determinants of student progression through sequences of developmental education, starting from initial referral. Results indicate that fewer than one half of the students who are referred to remediation complete the entire sequence to which they are referred. About 30 percent of students referred to developmental education do not enroll in any remedial course, and only about 60 percent of referred students actually enroll in a remedial course. Overall, the analysis indicates that more students exit their developmental sequences because they did not enroll in the first or a subsequent course than because they failed or withdrew from a course in which they were enrolled.
  • Developmental Education an Adult Basic Skills
    Many factors contribute to low rates of college completion among community college students assigned to remedial coursework. CCRC identifies these factors and evaluates reform efforts aimed at helping underprepared students achieve greater college success.
  • Community College Faculty and Developmental Education
    Community colleges have long provided broad access to large numbers of Americans who seek opportunities in higher education. Indeed, for many the only entrée into postsecondary learning is through an affordable public institution that can offer an array of career choices and possibilities for exploration or that can serve as a launching pad to a four-year institution. Yet many of these students arrive under-prepared for college-level work. Those adults who work with these hopeful youth in an effort to provide them with future opportunities experience multiple challenges. The circumstances that surround the majority of these students exert myriad social and economic pressures. Striving to promote excellence in this context requires a multi-faceted support system to help students achieve success.
  • Research in Developmental Education: Affective Assessment for Developmental Students
    Accurate assessment, effective academic advising, and appropriate placement are critical components of successful developmental education programs (Boylan, 2002; McCabe, 2000; Morante, 1989). Assessment is necessary in order to determine what student skills need to be developed. Advising is necessary to ensure that students know what assessment results mean and why they need to be placed in specific courses.
  • Motivation Theories for Developmental Mathematics
    Some educators want to inspire students who want to learn mathematics to exert the effort and time required for them to learn developmental mathematics without repeating courses. The focus of this study is to describe motivation in developmental mathematics students.
  • Learning Communities for Students in Developmental Reading: An Impact Study at Hillsborough Community College
    Over the last four decades, community colleges have played an increasingly important role in higher education. Today, community colleges enroll more than one in every three undergraduates nationally. Unfortunately, among students who enroll in community colleges with the intent to earn a credential or transfer to a four-year institution, only 51 percent achieve that goal within six years. Many postsecondary institutions operate learning communities to improve low rates of success. Basic learning communities simply co-enroll a cohort of students into two classes together. More comprehensive learning communities include additional components: The courses have integrated curricula, instructors collaborate closely, and student services such as enhanced advising and tutoring can be embedded, among other approaches.
  • Promising Practices: Developmental Education 2011 Leader Colleges
    Developmental education courses are designed for enrollees who are underprepared for college-level work. These courses are also referred to as college-prep, transitional, and foundational education on some campuses. Colleges generally offer courses in math, reading, and writing. Colleges may offer up to three levels of remediation before students are eligible for college-level coursework.
  • Building Student Success from the Ground Up: A Case Study of an Achieving the Dream College
    One of the first in-depth studies of an early Achieving the Dream college, Guilford Technical Community College in North Carolina, has been completed by Achieving the Dream partner MDRC. “Building Student Success From the Ground Up: A Case Study of an Achieving the Dream College” by Elizabeth Zachry and Genevieve Orr “draws from Guilford’s experience implementing Achieving the Dream to highlight what colleges may achieve and the challenges they may face in undertaking a similar process of institutional reform.”