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Math Pathways Information for WCU Advisors/Staff

Evidence-Based Success Stories

Many university and community college systems are involved in pathways models using co-requisite instruction. Below are four systems that implemented co-requisite math instruction (with the subsequent increase in the percent of students successfully completing the first math courses). ​

  • University of GA System (↑ 43%)
  • WV Community and Technical Colleges System (↑ 48%)
  • University of TN System (↑49%)
  • CO Community College System (↑33%)

*Source: Complete College America’s Corequisite Remediation: Spanning the Completion Divide

Other Champions of Math Pathways

  • Mathematical Association of America (MAA)
  • National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM)
  • American Mathematical Society (ASM)
  • American Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges (AMATYC)
  • UNC System Office
  • NC Community College System (NCCCS)

Problems with the Current Model that Each WCU Math Pathway Addresses

Current mathematics courses are one of the biggest barriers to college graduation. This affects economic growth and prosperity at all levels—individual, state, and national.​ (SOURCE: Mathematical Association of America 2015 CUPM Curriculum Guide)

There can be a disconnect between math courses and careers.

Traditional entry-level math courses have focused on procedural fluency and abstract math with little input from partner disciplines or needs of majors.​

​Students don’t see relevance of abstract and theoretical math courses or the connections to real-world applications in their majors.​

​College algebra is a poor fit for many majors and career fields. ​

​Twenty-first century mathematical competencies also need to include modeling, problem-solving, data analysis, strategic reasoning, and conceptual understanding.

A Case for Math Pathways to Calculus at WCU

34% of students who take MATH 130: College Algebra at WCU fail it.  About 50% receive a D, F, or W which does not adequately prepare them to advance.

Less than 10% of students who take MATH 130 go on to take MATH 153: Calculus I. Some students leave STEM majors after having not done well in College Algebra.  Many students taking College Algebra do not need to take Calculus. ​

​Only 24% of students who take MATH 130 go on to take MATH 146: Precalculus. For the other 76%, College Algebra is a terminal course or they take more courses at another institution. College Algebra is not serving its primary purpose of preparing students to take Calculus. ​

Many students in Precalculus and Calculus are algebraically underprepared to succeed. This contributes to a 41% DFW rate in Calculus II.

Advising Students for Pathways

Professional Advisors and Academic Advisors are guided by the undergraduate student's major(s) required math course(s).  

all undergraduate majors and minors and the required coursework to complete them

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