Instructional Practices Proved Crucial to College Completion

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A recent study conducted by Education Equity Solutions, a research organization advocating for equity-centered higher education policies, determined that passing the 'gateway math' class, which impedes college persistence, is more significantly influenced by instructional practices rather than high school GPA and student demographics. The study examines the effect of instructors and pedagogical styles on the student outcomes in the introductory college mathematics course, which is a persistent challenge for community college students to complete their degrees.

The research discovered that certain pedagogical strategies, such as providing comprehensive explanations of the grading system, establishing accurate accommodation guidelines, and employing active learning techniques, were correlated with better pass rates. The findings contribute to the limited pool of research on how introductory college math student outcomes are affected by instructors and pedagogical styles.

The study's findings indicate the necessity for community colleges to implement evidence-based instructional methods to enhance student learning and eliminate equity disparities. Moreover, culturally responsive pedagogies should be promoted to facilitate equity and engage first-generation and marginalized students. Lastly, participating institutions should establish structures and mechanisms for exchanging practices.


In conclusion, this study emphasizes the significance of objective instructional methods in achieving college completion and the adoption of evidence-based practices by community colleges for the purpose of promoting student learning and reducing equity gaps. By adhering to such practices, community colleges can create an institutional culture that values professional development for continuous improvement in the long term.