Completing gateway courses is an important milestone for community college students and is a strong predictor of future academic success. However, national statistics show that only 16% of community college students complete both English and math gateway courses in their first year. This lack of success has a severe impact on retention rates and graduation rates. Non-academic needs and a sense of belonging on campus are crucial factors in closing performance gaps based on race, income, and age.
Kentucky has fully adopted a “student ready” philosophy, with “corequisite” education providing structured academic support to students. The success of gateway courses also depends on the faculty’s approach. Professors need to provide a curriculum that draws upon culturally relevant examples with a social justice focus. They must also structure time for students to connect with faculty and review their work. This is essential for building student confidence and their capacity for success.
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