Colleges place too many on remedial track

Using unreliable placement tests, community colleges place tens of thousands of  students in remedial classes they don’t need, lowering their odds for success.

Placing poorly prepared students in “learning communities” that share classes and instructors has little long-term benefit, concludes a study at six community colleges.

Remedial students flood CUNY

Spending on remedial classes has doubled at New York City’s community colleges in the last 10 years, in part due to a sharp rise in “triple low remedial” students who are far behind in reading, writing and math.

“Most students have serious challenges remembering the basic rules of arithmetic,” (LaGuardia Professor Jerry) Ianni said of his remedial math class. “The course is really a refresher, but they aren’t ready for a refresher.”

Also on Community College Spotlight: “Learning communities” help students pass remedial math, but the effect fades after a few semesters, research concludes.


High school in college

On Community College Spotlight:  Bright ideas, like “learning communities” and dual-enrollment classes, are making college feel like high school, writes a dean. Students don’t like it.

At a California community college, remedial students — organized in a learning community — are reading and writing about vampire lit, starting with the Twilight books and moving on to Dracula.