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College Algebra Course Redesign Evolution or Revolution? The process of change…. Tammy Muhs-University of Central Florida Orlando, Florida

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Presentation on theme: "College Algebra Course Redesign Evolution or Revolution? The process of change…. Tammy Muhs-University of Central Florida Orlando, Florida"— Presentation transcript:

1 College Algebra Course Redesign Evolution or Revolution? The process of change…. Tammy Muhs-University of Central Florida Orlando, Florida

2 Motivation for Redesign College Algebra: Annual enrollment approximately 4,000 Why did we consider a mathematics course redesign? –Success Rates: Pass rates were down, withdrawal rates were up –Space Concerns: Too many students, not enough classrooms –Budget Concerns: We needed to do more, with less

3 Redesign Goals Increase learning outcomes and success rates while decreasing cost and withdrawal rates. –Create a student-centered learning environment – Students spend one hour in class where they review concepts from the previous week, highlight upcoming material, and receive administration information – Students spend a required three hours in the lab Mathematical Assistance and Learning Lab (MALL)

4 Mathematical Assistance and Learning Lab (MALL) From Renovation to Completion Phase I - 95 computers (Spring 2010) Phase II computers (Summer 2010) Phase III computers (Fall 2010)

5 Instructional Assistance in the MALL Peer tutors, undergraduate and graduate mathematics students work in the lab –Peer and undergraduate tutors paid $8 per hour –Graduate tutors (not GTAs) paid $12 per hour –Required to complete online homework –Become test proctors during testing weeks –Tutor training about 14 hours a semester College Reading & Learning Association International Tutor Program Certification Top GTAs are called Mentors –Meet with teaching team weekly –Communicate with students –Hold seminars and test reviews –Help with classroom management

6 Online Testing in the MALL Test Scheduling System (Testing Cal- Pearson Custom Product) –Scheduling is open for a week, students have multiple time and day options available, they receive automatically generated reminder s –Intermediate Algebra, College Algebra, Trigonometry, Precalculus, Finite Math, and Explorations in Math (enrollment up to 4,500 per semester) Testing is completed online in a proctored environment using a password system (MyMathLab) –Immediate feedback –Bluebook system to assign computers and scratch paper –Free response questions, multiple choice, or combination –Challenge week for formatting errors –Integrity violations almost non-existent –Print Cost savings (College Algebra tests in cost more than $7000)

7 Redesign Pilot Fall 2008 Decreased cost from $70 to $49 per student Full implementation as of spring 2010 Final Exam scores Fall 2006 Total course Fall 2008 Pilot Sections Mean score63.4%80.6% Standard deviation18.9%15.3% Number of students who took the common final exam

8 Presidents Class Size Initiative (PCSI) Provided support for Instructors and Lecturers to work in the MALL in addition to the peer tutors, graduate tutors, and GTAs Created Small Within Large Class Environment Students register in sections of 19 students Between 16 and 20 of these sections meet together once per week in a large lecture hall –Sections form both an in-class and virtual community Communication has been shown to have an important role in learning and understanding mathematics (Knuth & Peressini, 2001)

9 Course Grade Distribution and Final Exam Scores Summer 2009 Traditional Section n=226 students Summer 2009 Redesigned Sections n=162 students Fall 2009 Traditional Sections n=851 students Fall 2009 Redesigned Sections n=1174 students Success Rate61.5%75.3% 72.3%78.4% A11.9%20.4% 28.7%27.9% B26.1%36.4% 26.8%34.1% C23.5%18.5% 16.8%16.4% NC (no credit) 10.6%2.5% 9.3%0.7% F18.1%9.9% 13.9%14.7% W9.7%12.3% 4.6%6.2% Mean Score 71.0%77.5% 78.2%80.4% Standard Deviation15.9%13.9% 16.3%14.0%

10 Future Work and Conclusions Producing favorable results –Increasing the number of students advised by mentors and faculty –Improving student learning outcomes –Increasing course offerings Intermediate Algebra starting fall 2010 Precalculus starting spring 2011 Future studies –Look at retention and graduation rates –Look at success in later courses (STEM)


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