With community colleges experiencing burgeoning enrollment, the recent announcement by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to award a $12.9 million grant for improving remedial education in math and reading at community colleges across the nation, is coming none too soon. The money will be used to train more educators in remedial education, create online “gatekeeper courses” for students and develope new materials for remedial math learning, which adult learners tend to lack. “Using a mix of learning approaches, we can use technology to make learning more accessible to a wider range of students,” said Ruth Rominger, director of learning design for the Monterey Institute for Technology and Education (MITE). “We can create learning environments that let students work through the courses in a way that is suitable for their learning styles.”
Here are relevant statistics from the article below:
• More than 60 percent of students in community colleges need some kind of remedial class–most often, math training–before they can take credit-bearing courses, according to recent studies.
• A study published this summer shows that community colleges spend more than $1.4 billion on remedial courses every year.
George R. Boggs, president of the American Association of Community Colleges, raises relevant questions regarding two of the biggest challenges for community colleges are: “how to improve success rates for the millions of underprepared students who come through their doors, and how to harness the power of technology to expand capacity and enrich the learning process”[?] This grant aims to help address these issues.
Ed-tech grants target remedial college courses
Nearly $13M in Gates Foundation funding will support faculty certification and a range of other programs for basic college classes
By Dennis Carter, Assistant Editor
A Gates Foundation grant will create online “gatekeeper courses” for community college students.
Social networking soon could be used to help form a virtual community of campus educators charged with creating a national certification for teachers of remedial college courses, after the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced $12.9 million in new education technology funding for community colleges Dec. 3.
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