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ERIC Number: EJ1118784
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Oct
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-1527-9316
Closing the Gap: First Year Success in College Mathematics at an HBCU
Harrington, Melissa A.; Lloyd, Andrew; Smolinski, Tomasz; Shahin, Mazen
Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, v16 n5 p92-106 Oct 2016
At our Historically-Black University, about 89% of first-year students place into developmental mathematics, negatively impacting retention and degree completion. In 2012, an NSF-funded learning enrichment project began offering the introductory and developmental mathematics courses on-line over the summer to incoming science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) majors at no cost to students. Passing rates for the summer on-line classes were around 80%, and students in the on-line classes scored equivalently on the common departmental final exams as students taking the classes in the traditional format. For students who passed the on-line classes, their performance in the following classes (College Algebra and Trigonometry) at least equaled that of students who progressed to those courses by taking the traditional series of in-person courses. Three years of data show that students who started college with an on-line mathematics course in a summer bridge program had a higher first year GPA, a better first year retention rate and earned significantly more credits in their first year than the overall population of STEM students. While not solely attributable to the on-line classes, these results suggest that offering introductory mathematics courses on-line as part of a freshman bridge program is an effective, scalable intervention to increase the academic success of students who enter college under-prepared in mathematics. The positive results are particularly exciting since the students in our project were 87% minority.
Indiana University. 755 West Michigan Street UL 1180D, Indianapolis, IN 46202. Tel: 317-274-5647; Fax: 317-278-2360; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Science Foundation (NSF)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Delaware
Grant or Contract Numbers: HRD928404