The Game Changers
Systemic reforms. Significant results. More college graduates.
  • THE ESSENTIALS
  • End the practice of "College Algebra for All"
  • Provide multiple pathways aligned to students' chosen programs of study
  • Ensure that students are completing their gateway math course within the first year
  • BEST PRACTICES
35%
of students complete gateway math in their first year
Do This!
End the practice of using College Algebra as the default gateway math course for new entering students. Provide rigorous and appropriate gateway math courses that align with the skills and knowledge necessary for success in students' chosen program of study.
  • THE ESSENTIALS
  • Enroll in gateway courses as default
  • Align mathematics to programs of study
  • Use multiple measures to create placement range
  • Provide support as corequisite, not pre-requisite
  • BEST PRACTICES
56%
of students at two-year institutions start in remediation
Do This!
Default many more unprepared students into college-level gateway courses with mandatory, just-in-time instructional support. For the most unprepared students, provide remedial help parallel to highly structured certificate programs.
13%
of part-time students graduate in 8 years for 4-year degrees
Do This!
Incentivize students to attend full-time -- 15 credits per semester. Use banded tuition so 15 credits per semester cost students no more than 12 credits. Cap degree credit requirements (120 for bachelor's and 60 for associate) to ensure degrees can be completed on time.
37%
of students attend school part-time, often juggling families, jobs, and school
Do This!
Use structured scheduling to help working students balance jobs and school -- doing so enables many more students to attend college full-time, shortening their time to completion.
81
Average credits associate-seeking students take to graduate -- 60 is standard
Do This!
Enabled by technology, default all students into highly structured degree plans, not individual courses. Start students in a limited number of "meta majors," which narrow into majors. Map out every semester of study for the entire program, and guarantee that milestone courses will be available when needed. Provide informed choices and intrusive, just-in-time advising to help them stay on track

Money and Metrics

The Game Changers are most effective when states have established the conditions for change, focusing on metrics that matter and paying for outcomes, not just enrollment. We must begin our work by looking at explicit, easy-to-understand metrics that are laser-focused on progress and completion. States should use these metrics to tie state funding to completion of degrees and certificates, including financial incentives for deployment of other strategies to boost college completion and close attainment gaps. This ecosystem of money and metrics ensures reforms can thrive.
Learn more about Performance (Outcomes-Based) Funding here. Learn more about the Common College Completion Metrics here.

News

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