Thursday, August 9, 2012

Remediation in College

Why do we focus on college readiness through teaching excellence and how common core state standards can help? Because remediation is so widespread.  Our own Sarah Jensen compiled the following facts:

The need for remediation is widespread
  • 51.7 percent of freshmen entering a two-year college enrolled in remedial courses. i
    19.9 percent of freshmen entering a four-year college enrolled in remedial courses. iii
  • African American, Hispanic, and low-income students place into remedial courses proportionally higher than their peers.iv
By 2018, 63 percent of all jobs in the U.S. economy will require postsecondary education.i All too often, however, students enter college unprepared for the rigor of freshman-level college courses. These students are tracked into prerequisite developmental education courses, which decrease their chances of graduating. In order to achieve a higher rate of students graduating from college, we need to reduce the need for students coming directly from high school to take remedial courses. 
At two-year colleges: v
o 67.7 percent African American 

o 58.3 percent Hispanic
o 64.7 percent low-income
o 46.8 percent white

At four-year colleges: vi
o 39.1 percent African American o 20.6 percent Hispanic
o 31.9 percent low-income
o 13.6 percent white

Students tracked into remediation typically have low college attainment rates
  •   86 percent of two-year college students who took remedial courses do not graduate within three years.vii
  •   Nearly half of two-year college remedial students never start a college-level course.viii
  •   Four in ten students at a four-year college who took remedial courses do not graduate
    within six years.ix
  •   The more remedial classes a student takes, the less likely they are to graduate.x 

    i Carnevale, A. P., Smith, N., Strohl, J. (June, 2010). Projections of Jobs and Education Requirements through 2018. Retrieved from
    ii Complete College America. (April, 2012). Remediation: Higher Education’s Bridge to Nowhere. Retrieved from
    iii Ibid
    iv Ibid
    v Ibid
    vi Ibid
    vii Ibid
    viii Ibid
    ix Ibid
    x Diploma to nowhere (2008). Strong American Schools: Washington. Retrieved from
    Attewell, P., Lavin, D., Domina, T., Levey, T. (2006). New Evidence on College Remediation.

    The Journal of Higher Education, 77 (5), 886-924. Retrieved from