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MCC to Develop New Course to Promote Student Readiness for College Math

[Tuesday, August 22, 2017]

McHenry County College recently received a $7,480 Bridging the Gap grant from the Illinois Community College Board to create a new course for students who struggle with math. The grant will provide funding for the development of a new co-requisite math class, designed to allow students who are not prepared for college-level math to receive the support they need to complete a college math course.

Students in a co-requisite math class complete two math classes concurrently: a developmental math course designed to prepare students for college-level math along with a college-level math course. The developmental math course provides supplemental instruction and "just-in-time" tutoring to introduce students to concepts they need to complete the college-level course. This grant project will pair General Education Statistics (MAT 120), a credit-bearing, college-level course typically taken by students in liberal arts programs, with a developmental course. The co-requisite course will also incorporate mandatory tutoring focusing on effective study strategies, test-taking skills, time management, organizational skills and homework support.

Studies show that having to enroll in developmental coursework is a significant barrier to future college and career success. A 2010 study by the Community College Research Center found that two-thirds of students referred to developmental courses never go on to enroll in credit-bearing classes. Co-requisite courses reduce the time it takes students to complete a degree by allowing students to complete developmental and credit-bearing coursework concurrently.

"The MCC Mathematics Department has dramatically reduced the number of students who require developmental mathematics by allowing some high school seniors to take a dual credit course during their senior year in high school that if passed, allows students to begin their experience at MCC in college level mathematics," said Laura Middaugh, MCC math instructor and college success studies chairperson for developmental math. "There are, however, still a number of students who still require remediation. This new co-requisite course allows students to take two hours of developmental mathematics at the same time they are enrolled in General Education Statistics."

Middaugh is the project lead for a team of faculty and other curriculum experts, who will create the developmental course this fall and seek approval for the course from the Illinois Community College Board in spring 2018. Their goal is to enroll students in the co-requisite course in fall 2018.

For more information about MCC’s co-requisite math course, or other co-requisite offerings, contact Adriane Hutchinson, dean of academic development, at (815) 479-7829.


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