- Preliminary findings of a study reported in Inside Higher Ed from the City University of New York’s Start initiative found that students made more progress when enrolled in developmental education during their first semester, especially in math, than those who fully matriculated into the university system. The institutions involved in the study were the Borough of Manhattan Community College, Kingsborough Community College, LaGuardia Community College and Queensborough Community College.
- Students enrolled in the the CUNY Start program take an intensive semester of remedial math, reading and writing courses before moving on to college-level, credit-bearing coursework. Donna Linderman, associate vice chancellor for academic affairs within the CUNY Office of Academic Affairs, told Inside Higher Ed that the program benefits students who need additional support in improving their skills.
- CUNY Start students pay only $75 for the remedial program, allowing them to apply their financial aid awards to credit-bearing courses later.
What is most surprising about about the CUNY program is that the co-requisite remediation model of developmental education has previously shown to have a higher course pass rate than traditional remediation. Tennessee scaled corequisite remediation in math, writing and reading at all of its 13 public community colleges during the fall of 2015. A study by the Tennessee Board of Regents, the body that oversees the state’s two-year institutions, found that more students completed credit-bearing courses compared to those who took traditional prerequisite courses four years prior to the study.
The Community College Research Center also released a study around the same time period stating that the corequisite model of remediation is more cost-effective than the traditional prerequisite remedial model. However, the corequisite approach does cost more per student to maintain.
In June 2017, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed into law the use of corequisite remediation as the required model for students enrolled in developmental education courses. Approximately 54% of the state’s community college students are enrolled in developmental education courses. The law gave all of the state’s public colleges and universities that have development education programs until 2018 to have 25% of their developmental students enrolled in a corequisite course. The mandate increases to 50% by 2019 and by 75% in 2020.