ERIC Number: ED303219
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989-Jan-22
Prerequisites and Success in History Courses in the San Jose/Evergreen Community College District. Institutional Research Report Number 74.
Kangas, Jon Alan; Landers, Joanne
In 1983, the San Jose/Evergreen Community College District Board of Trustees asked that all courses be given appropriate levels of reading, writing, and math prerequisites. Minimum competencies (generally 9th grade English reading and writing skills) were assigned to almost all district courses. A study was conducted to determine the degree to which reading and writing skill prerequisites were related to success in history courses, and the degree to which success was related to satisfying these prerequisites by coursework compared to placement testing. The history program was chosen because it contained courses required for graduation, because students in history have traditionally received a broad range of grades, and because history instructors thought that 9th grade reading and writing skills were not sufficient to perform adequately in history classes. Study findings, based on the grades of all 1,632 students enrolled in history courses in fall 1987, included the following: (1) the higher the prerequisite level, the greater the student's chance of receiving an A, B, or C grade; (2) students who completed Freshman Composition had a 49% chance of earning an A or B grade in their history courses; and (3) students who entered history courses having fulfilled prerequisites through coursework were more apt to succeed than those who met prerequisites taking placement tests. (AJL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: San Jose/Evergreen Community Coll. District, San Jose, CA.