The Importance Of Developmental Education

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Every year, millions of college students take developmental education courses. Developmental courses are classes that students must take if they are shown to be below grade level. They are usually taken in reading, math, and English and they are non-credit. They are supposed to help students get to the skill level that they need to be successful in college. However, developmental courses have actually done more harm than good. More than fifty percent of students entering a two year college and more than twenty percent of students entering four year universities are placed in developmental courses. (College America, 2012) These courses are a severe handicap for students. Traditional developmental courses should be replaced with accelerated and/or…show more content…
Most students have their education path significantly delayed because they have to complete multiple semesters of prerequisite developmental education classes before they can qualify to enroll in the on level college classes that are necessary for their degree program. “Fewer than one in ten students at community college who are enrolled in developmental education courses will graduate within two years” and only a third complete their developmental course requirement within six years. (College America, 2012), (Edgecombe, Cormier, Bickerstaff, & Barragan, 2013) If the colleges offered extra academic help as a co-requisite as opposed to making students complete time consuming prerequisites, they would succeed at the same rate that the on level college students do. (College America, 2012) Chabot College that was mentioned earlier is a great example of how the method of developmental education that is currently in place can be accelerated to save students’ valuable time. At Chabot, they used an accelerated developmental English course which proved that students benefited from the accelerated method much more than they did from the traditional developmental programs which took multiple semesters to complete. (Hern, 2011) They compared the accelerated one-semester course to their…show more content…
However, the way in which these students’ capabilities are being measured is by having them take exams upon entering college administering one test to determine the success a student's entire college career is a bit unfair. Smart people fail tests. It isn't a matter of knowing the material or not, it's a matter of remembering it. The majority of these students need just a few weeks of developmental education as a refresher. Most of them simply forgot the material over the summer or are returning students who have been out of school for a long period of time. (Matthews, 2015) Overall, we are in desperate need a better program than the developmental education courses that are costing students more money, more time, and causing them to give up on their academic goals. Accelerated and co-requisite courses are definitely the solution to

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