Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Accelerating Developmental Math Students in California Community Colleges: A Comparative Assessment of Two Acceleration Models
by Martinez, Arturo F., Ed.D., California State University, Long Beach, 2018, 208; 10824201
Abstract (Summary)

Community colleges across the nation are under increasing pressure to find ways to improve the rate of which students, placed in remediation, complete college-level coursework. The attrition of students placed into the lowest levels of developmental mathematics has been a challenge for many colleges to overcome. Research has well recorded the lack of progress of students placed three to four levels below a transfer-level course. Yet, few studies have compared the outcome of similar students in accelerated programs designed to shorten the pathways through remediation. This study focused on students placed in the lowest levels of remediation at two colleges offering consecutive sequences of course-redesign and compression models of acceleration. Using multivariate analyses, the comparative effect on completion rates of students accelerated through two different developmental math acceleration programs from two different colleges within a four year period (2013–2017) were examined. Moreover, this study used student background characteristics, math placement and math acceleration model to predict developmental and college level math course completion using logistic regression analysis.

The results of this study suggest students placed in developmental mathematics who are in an accelerated pathway have decreased time to complete remediation and a transfer-level math course. Findings indicate course-redesign acceleration model yielded more statistically significant improvements in transfer-level math and developmental math completion rates for first-generation students, as well as students placed in both low-level and mid-level remediation. The compression model of acceleration showed significant improvement in completion rates for students placed in mid-level remediation yet results were mixed for students placed in low-level remediation. Students in consecutive acceleration courses were most likely to complete a transfer-level math course, and historically underrepresented minority students were more likely to complete remediation, under certain circumstances, in the compression acceleration model.

These findings inform the college administrators on the potential of sequential accelerated programs. The implications of these results contribute to redesigning academic programs and support current developmental policy reforms. Community colleges are encouraged to consider the recommendations in this study, such as integrating course redesign in California Assembly Bill 705 and California Community College Guided Pathways, to help non-traditional students who are most often placed into the lowest levels of remediation.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Locks, Angela M.
Commitee: Mosqueda, Cynthia, Vega, William M.
School: California State University, Long Beach
Department: Educational Leadership
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-A 79/12(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Community college education, Mathematics education, Educational evaluation, Educational leadership
Keywords: Community college developmental math, Compression, Course redesign, Developmental math acceleration, Transfer-level completion
Publication Number: 10824201
ISBN: 9780438258327
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