Dissertation

The Effect of Corequisite Mathematics Remediation on Student Retention at a Community College

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Research and data show that developmental education has been a stumbling block for the majority of community college students in pursuing their higher education degree. Students can spend several semesters to complete developmental math requirements in order to take a first college-level credit-bearing math course for their degree. Many colleges are working on reforming developmental education and instituting different initiatives to determine what works best for their students. One such reform that is taking place at many institutions is incorporating a corequisite mathematics model into their program to allow students needing developmental education to be directly enrolled in a gateway college-level math course with embedded remedial support. Many studies have been done to prove the effectiveness of this model by examining gateway course completion, credit accumulation, and graduation and transfer rates. This nonexperimental causal-comparative quantitative research study contributes to the existing literature by also examining the one-year retention rate of first-time, full-time, degree/certificate-seeking students in three mathematics courses, developmental, college-level, and corequisite courses. When testing for a statistically significant difference in all three mathematics courses, a chi-square test of independence revealed that the relationship between retention and the type of course students were enrolled in was statistically significant, χ2 (2, N = 512) = 10.149, p = .006. Moreover, students enrolled in a corequisite math course were more likely to be retained in college one year later than their counterparts enrolled in a developmental math course. These results were more pronounced among non-first-generation, Black, White, male, and Pell grant recipient students. The recommendation that evolved from this study is to implement a policy at community colleges that will allow students needing an upper-level developmental course to take a corequisite mathematics course instead. This policy would improve student success outcomes by increasing gateway college-level math course completion and one-year retention rate in addition to saving students time and money on unnecessary multiple-semester developmental education classes.

Last modified
  • 03/04/2024
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