The following publications provide insight into the issues related to setting of policy related to and the practice of delivering developmental education.
ECS State Policy Database: Postsecondary Remediation
The ECS database provides a summary of enacted and adopted state policies related to remedial/developmental education since 2000.
The Progress of Education Reform: Community College Success Bruce Vandal, September 2008 This ECS publication looks at the latest research on student success in community colleges and offers insights on the strategies that show the most promise in promoting greater educational attainment for community college students.
Accelerating Remedial Math Education: How Institutional Innovation and State Policy Interact
Radha Roy Biswas, Jobs for the Future, 2007
This policy brief looks at efforts in three community colleges, two of which are Achieving the Dream institutions, to revamp remedial math programming. It focuses on the ways in which state and system policies interact with institutional reform efforts — and how policies can either support or slow institutional change.
ACT National Curriculum Survey
This survey of educators identifies gaps between postsecondary expectations and high school practice. The survey offers a series of policy recommendations on how to create more alignment between K-12 curriculum and postsecondary entrance standards.
Challenges in Assessing For Postsecondary Readiness
Darryl F. Mellard and Gretchen Anderson, Center for Research on Learning, University of Kansas, National Commission on Adult Literacy, December, 2007
This policy brief examines the limitations of current assessments to determine student placement into developmental studies courses. The report recommends that the adult education system to be better aligned with postsecondary goals and college placement decisions. It also suggests that current assessments must be improved to more accurately determine college readiness.
Costs and Consequences of Remedial Course Enrollment in Ohio
Ohio Board of Regents, 2006
This brief analyzes the costs of remedial education to institutions and students by following a cohort of students for six years.
Developmental Education and College Opportunity in New England
Institute for Higher Education Policy and New England Resource Center for Higher Education, 2002
This study examines the impact of policies to reduce access to developmental education. The report outlines means of delivery for developmental education and offers suggestions for future research.
Diploma to Nowhere
Strong American Schools, 2008
This report provides new research on the prevalence of remedial education at postsecondary institutions and estimates of the cost of remediation to students and to taxpayers. Recommendations focus on a multifaceted approach on improving preparation of students in high school and reforming the delivery of remediation education at postsecondary institutions.
Ending College Remediation: Consequences for Access and Opportunity
Tara Parker, ASHE/Lumina Fellows Series, 2007
This paper examines state and institutional policies to reduce access to or eliminate developmental studies programs. The author argues that elimination of remedial education is premature as long as students continue to enter postsecondary unprepared and inequity in education opportunities persist.
Enhancing College Student Success Through Developmental Education
Alene Russell, American Association of State Colleges and Universities, 2008
The report provides overview of current policy and research on developmental education. It argues that developmental education is a necessary part of state efforts to increase college attainment rates.
Improving College Readiness of California Community College Students
Elizabeth G. Hill, California Legislative Auditors Office, 2008
This resource identifies current state policies that impede student attainment of basic skills for postsecondary education. The report recommends using standardized assessments, requiring remediation upon enrollment and provides flexibility to community colleges to address issues.
It’s Not About the Cut Score
Michael Lawrence Collins, 2008
The author describes the experiences of three states that reviewed their placement assessment policies. It encourages states to consider college placement policies as part of a broader vision of college readiness.
Policies to Promote Adult Education and Postsecondary Alignment
Julie Strawn, Center for Law and Social Policy, National Commission on Adult Literacy, 2007
This policy brief examines the current policy challenges that impede access to postsecondary education for adult students who require English language training, GED or Adult Basic Education training. Recommendations include the need for better data systems for adult students that will enable the different aspects of the adult education system to share information and track the progress of students. In addition, the report recommends greater integration of adult education services and reforms to financial aid that will benefit adults.
Setting Cut Scores for College Placement
Deanna L. Morgan and Michalis P. Michaelides, College Board, 2005
This resource provides an overview of the issues to be considered as states, systems and institutions set performance standards and corresponding cut scores for placement into college-level coursework.
Standardization vs. Flexibility: State Policy Options on Placement Testing for Development Education in Community Colleges
Heath Prince, Jobs for the Future, 2005
This policy brief examines the tradeoffs states encounter as they make state-level developmental education placement policies. The brief encourages policies to be combined with appropriate support services and interventions that enable students to succeed. It promotes a P-16 approach with multiple assessments of students and sound data collection and analysis.
Toward Informative Assessment and a Culture of Evidence
Lloyd Bond, A Report from The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching
Strengthening Pre-Collegiate Education in Community Colleges, 2009
The project, funded by the Carnegie Foundation, focused on teaching and learning in basic skills mathematics and English at 11 California community colleges. This report discusses the myriad ways in which the participating colleges have used both traditional measures of student performance, such as class grades and course completion, as well as more innovative forms of assessment and data collection to improve pedagogical practice and to enhance student learning.
Redesigning the Basics
Tennessee's community colleges are using technology to change their approach to developmental reading and math. Campuses participating in the Tennessee Developmental Redesign Project have seen significant increases in the percent of students passing remedial courses — as much as 20% in some cases. The more customized, self-paced courses also have saved students and institutions time and money. (National Crosswalk, May 2010)
A Good Start: Two-year Effects of a Freshmen Learning Community Program at Kingsborough Community College
Susan Scrivener, Dan Bloom, Allen LeBlanc, Christina Paxson, Cecilia Elena Rouse and Colleen Sommo; MDRC, 2008
This study examines the impact of learning communities on student success at Kingsborough Community College of the City University of New York. The study found that learning community students are more likely to pass English-assessment tests and transfer to a four-year institution.
Assessing and Improving Student Outcomes: What We Are Learning at Miami Dade College
Joanne Bashford and Doug Slater, Community College Research Center, 2008
Told from the point of view of the Miami Dade College (MDC) Office of Institutional Effectiveness, this paper describes how MDC has begun to develop a systematic and data-informed method for assessing and improving student outcomes across its large, eight-campus college.
Basic Skills as a Foundation for Student Success in California Community Colleges
Center for Student Success, 2007
This literature review was conducted for the California Basic Skills Initiative. It reviews research on the most effective practices for teaching basic skills to college students.
Do Student Success Courses Help Community College Students Succeed?
Matthew Zeidenberg, Davis Jenkins and Juan Calcagano; Community College Research Center, 2007
This report studies the impact of student success courses on student persistence, completion and transfer. The report finds some impact, but was unclear about which characteristics of these courses were most beneficial.
Learning Better Together: The Impact of Learning Communities on the Persistence of Low-Income Students
Cathy McHugh Engtrom and Vincent Tinto, Pell Institute, 2008
This longitudinal study on the impact of learning communities on community colleges finds that the learning communities approach is well suited for the teaching of basic skills.
Stepping Stones to a Degree: The Impact of Enrollment Pathways and Milestones on Older Community College Student Outcomes
Juan Calcagno, Peter Crosta, Davis Jenkins and Thomas Bailey; Community College Research Center, 2006
This brief on a larger study was conducted to assess the impact on enrollment pathways and academic milestones on student success. The report finds that enrollment pathways are an effective strategy for adult students and academic milestones are more effective for younger students.
Datanotes: Keeping Informed About Achieving the Dream Data
JBL Associates, Quarterly, November/December, 2008
This newsletter, produced for the Achieving the Dream initiative, provides a brief analysis of data collected by the initiative. It includes several issues dedicated to developmental studies.
Remedial Education at Degree-Granting Postsecondary Institutions in Fall 2000
Basmat Parsad and Laurie Lewis, National Center for Education Statistics, 2003
The authors provide a comprehensive overview on the presence of remedial education at postsecondary institutions. Included are statistics on institutions that provide remedial education and the percentage of students who enroll in remedial courses.