In the planning stage, your aim is to define the basic needs of the model in terms of goals and how you will measure student success. It’s important to do your research! Ask yourself, what is out there that has been working for others? What are you trying to accomplish with your model?
In this stage, it’s important to outline what you want your model to include. If you have a list of must-haves, your research will be more focused and your conversations will be deliberate. To help with this stage, form a committee to focus on student success. The committee should include a diverse group of college community members, each of whom believes in the co-requisite model as a way of promoting student success. Having the input of a diverse committee at this stage will help you gain buy-in later in the implementation process.
Your committee might include the following people:
- Faculty member(s) teaching the course
- Faculty member(s) creating the curriculum
- Math department chair overseeing the co-requisite model
- Academic advisor within this domain
- Academic dean or vice president
- Data/institutional research member
- Registrar’s office representative
- Admissions office representative
Here are a few items that you’ll want the committee to tackle:
- Reasons for implementation
- Overview of the implementation timeline — When will this be implemented at scale? What does that mean on your campus?
- Defining student success within the co-requisite model
- Developing a plan for when students will enroll in the model (First year?) and how to implement this successfully
When it comes to planning your co-requisite initiative, research is important! Tammi Marshall notes that Cuyamaca College left no stone unturned when building their base of research.
“What research wasn’t undertaken? We read everything and anything we could find. Information on what had been done in other states, all the research on the Dana Center website, as well as information from CAP (California Acceleration Project) and its resources, just to name a few.”
However, research isn’t the only important piece in the planning stage. Keeping your goal top of mind is also essential.
As Rebecca Wulf at Ivy Tech Community College notes, “An experienced team of faculty decided that the course should have three purposes: just-in-time remediation, study skills, review and help with the college course.”
Building an experienced team of faculty doesn’t always mean building a team of full-time faculty exclusively. In Virginia, some institutions engaged adjunct faculty early in the process and went on to invite them to join the planning and development teams.
“Both full-time and adjunct faculty worked as a team, with regular meetings. All were equally engaged and adjuncts put forth just as much time and effort as the full-time faculty in preparing and teaching the courses. They bring to the table outside perspective that full-time faculty may not have,” says Patricia Parker of the Virginia Math Pathways Project.