Strategy #1: Adjust institutional practices to advance student placement in math.
Where the historic placement yields a high number of students entering at three or more levels below transfer level courses, VVC has adjusted cut scores and introduced multiple measures including high school GPA and recency of completed high school math courses. Compared to past performance on the Accuplacer alone, the new SAM placement strategies will allow substantially more students to start their math sequence closer to transfer level, eliminating approximately half of the student exit points. Adjustments planned for Fall 2017 and 2018, will allow the largest group of incoming students to place directly into a transfer level math class.
SAM plans to change current placement practices and radically streamlines the math sequence for 98% of students. The current possibility of up to five pre-requisite courses before transfer level math will become no more than two for virtually all VVC students.
Strategy #2: Scale up and nurture success of the new non-STEM math pathway.
With support from the grant, SAM will further scale up VVC's new non-STEM pathway by preparing more faculty to teach more sections of Math 63 and Math 120 statistics courses. The new content emphasizes critical thinking and group discussions - a drastic departure from current instructional paradigms. Professional development and collaboration will expose faculty to new instructional techniques needed to maximize student success. As more instructor are trained, the college can then build capacity.
Strategy #3: Provide support to a greater proportion of students who need help to succeed in math.
Co-requisite support courses or new curriculum which embeds additional support within the targeted gateway and transfer level classes will reach up to 40% more students than currently access support interventions on their own. VVC faculty have created a method of delivering just-in-time remediation through gateway courses that embed foundational skills within the core curriculum.
Faculty plan to evaluate the efficacy of this method to determine the best option for remediating students.
With grant support, new curriculum has been developed to provide just-in-time remediation for the remaining targets courses (Math 90 and Math 120) with planned implementation in Fall 2017. Additional interventions currently being implemented are skills workshops, embedded tutoring, and exploration of special topics such as time management, study tactics, and test-taking strategies. You can view these interventions in a video format here.
Strategy #4: Increase professional development and collaboration among math department faculty and K-12 math teachers.
SAM seeks not just to implement changes in college systems and curriculum, but also to change the culture of mathematics instruction. To further engage math faculty professional development beyond peer-led collaborative experiences, grant funds will allow VVC to host on-site training seminars and workshops bringing experts to a region that rarely has direct access to education thought leaders. This strategy is accomplished through the professional development math symposium events hosted at VVC for math faculty and local K-12 math educators to participate in, four events are hosted per year.
Last Updated 10/16/17