CCSNH Partners with High Schools to Improve Math Preparedness
CCSNH understands the importance of mathematics in students’ ability to transition successfully from high school to college, and is partnering with NH high schools to improve the levels of math readiness of incoming college students.
The CCSNH “Math Project” began in 2006 as a cooperative research and curriculum development effort involving CCSNH, the University System of NH and a pilot group of NH high schools.
This first phase of the project involved system-wide measurement of math readiness for entering college students. This analysis yielded an outcome comparable to national norms, with one in three entering students assessed as ready to enroll in college-level mathematics.
The second phase, identified as the Mathematics Learning Communities (MLC) partnership, was the creation of two innovative and integrated math courses for high school seniors:
A Senior Math course based on the 14 math competencies required to place into college-level math at the NH Community Colleges. A TAC.Math (Topics in Applied Math) course, developed as the common threshold math course at the NH Community Colleges, which can be taken by high school students as a dual high school/college credit course through CCSNH’s Running Start program. TAC.Math is also transferrable to many four-year colleges and universities.
Senior Math and TAC.Math incorporate scientifically proven best teaching practices that include Habits of Mind (Costa 2000) and highly motivating Applied Problem Solving (Lesh, 2008).
The partnerships that have been building to improve math education in New Hampshire hold great promise for our high school population and the state’s workforce. Collaborations among educational sectors have brought together high school and college-level educators in efforts to measure and improve student outcomes in math education. New Hampshire’s Community College and University Systems have pledged efforts to double the number of graduates from STEM programs – Science, Technology, Engineering and Math – by 2025. In accepting that challenge, both systems recognized the importance of a strong high school-to-college continuum in math education. Links between the postsecondary education sector and the business community are helping to inform and guide these efforts.