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Impact on Students

Rio Salado College

In the redesign, did students learn more, less or the same compared to the traditional format?

Improved Learning

The average grade for students in all four redesigned classes was 79%. This is not significantly different from students’ grades in the traditional formats. Grade-point comparisons were the only measures of impact on students’ learning used because a planned pre- and post-assessment approach, using a common exam, did not prove feasible. Students’ performance in subsequent sequential courses was examined, but no trend could be identified due to the small size of the populations involved.

Other Impacts on Students

Overall, the retention rate for students in redesigned sections of the four courses was 64.8%, an increase (5.8%) from the 59% that had been standard in traditional formats. The lowest retention rate was in College Algebra, and the highest was in Mathematical Concepts/Applications, a terminal course used to fulfill one of the admission requirements for several health-care programs. Age did not appear to be a factor in course retention: men had only a slightly lower retention rate than women.

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