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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Do we have a College Readiness Gap?

I was a little taken aback when I came across this detailed info-graphic recently at

There is a lot of good information from  National Association for College Admission Counseling and American Youth Policy Forum to digest here, but one statistic jumped out to me about whether our high schools are adequately preparing students for college. The fact that 40 percent of admitted and enrolled college students take a remedial course should set off alarm bells itself. 

The graphic also lays out why that creates such an uphill battle. It cites a survey as well that only 17 percent of students who must take a remedial reading course in college earn a bachelor's degree or higher.

This lists some good factors that contribute to the problem, especially with what areas are valued in the admissions process. It also suggests some strategies for high schools and students in preparation for college.

"College Readiness" and "Career Readiness" are huge buzzwords in both education and politics these days. Because a significant portion of American students are legitimately unprepared for college, it's obvious we need fundamental change. This topic also highlights the importance of intervening with students much earlier than the point when they get to college. According to the conversations we have daily with school districts and universities across the country, this is obviously a big focus. And teachers and administrators have made progress in the last decade or so.

However, based on this, we still have a long way to go. So, take a look at this graphic. What advice would you give to either a high school freshman or an educator? What do you think would be most helpful to chip into the number of students taking remedial courses and to make sure more students are ready once they get to college?

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