Career Pathways Initiative

Ivy Tech Community College Program Aims to Increase College Completion

Posted by Andrala Walker - On December 19, 2013 (EST)

Ivy Tech Community College Program Aims to Increase College Completion in Shorter Time

Ivy Tech Community College in Indiana has long been an innovation leader in curriculum development and implementing new concepts such as prior learning assessments.  This post is taken from staff reports in the Kokomo Tribune and feaures a new first-of-its kind Math Pathways program to help students graduate sooner.

Ivy Tech Community College has created a first-of-its-kind Math Pathways program within its curriculum to help students graduate sooner and meet their future college or career goals.

Math courses now will be based on one of three pathways specific to the type of math skills students will need in their future careers or continuing education. Ivy Tech also has introduced the concept of “co-requisites,” which allows students to take remedial and credit-bearing courses in the same semester.

“The primary objectives for the changes are to provide a supportive, accelerated math experience for students who are not quite ready for college-level math, and to provide relevant math curriculum aligned with the needs of workforce,” said Mary Ostrye, provost and senior vice president at Ivy Tech. “We believe that implementing these three math pathways are important steps toward reaching these goals.”

The first new pathway, Applied Tech Career Pathway, was designed for the School of Technology programs and will be rolled out statewide in January. A new course, technical mathematics, with an emphasis on real-life math applications, was created for this pathway.

The second option is the Applied and non-STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Transfer Pathway. Ivy Tech created a quantitative reasoning course for this pathway, which was designed to support all non-transfer Associate of Applied Science degrees, Associate of Arts and other transfer programs in the public and social service fields and most health programs.

The third pathway is the STEM/Algebra-Calculus Transfer Pathway. This pathway begins with college algebra and is intended for STEM majors in the School of Applied Science/Engineering Technology; science, math, and social science majors in liberal arts; and for business and a select few health programs. Ivy Tech will start fully implementing Math Pathways and the co-requisite model in fall 2014.

“Ivy Tech really is on the cutting edge of redesigning math nationally,” said Kim King, vice chancellor of academic affairs at Ivy Tech’s Kokomo location. “The whole idea behind it is you give students the math required for their career path. It’s a way to increase student success.”

The new pathways are changing the curriculum in several ways, including the elimination of courses and changing course requirements for some majors. The goal is for students to complete degree requirements and graduate college in less time.

“It really is not dumbing down the math,” Cain said. “It’s actually teaching more effectively because it’s more focused and with more support.”

Ivy Tech’s partnership with the Charles A. Dana Center at the University of Texas at Austin led to the Math Pathways approach. With a mission of eliminating the one-size-fits-all approach to math, the Dana Center supported Ivy Tech in collecting data to determine the math concepts students need to be successful.

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Modified On : December 19, 2013
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