Designing Math Pathways: Building Institutional Capacity and Sustainability in Math Redesign

Last month in Minneapolis, Achieving the Dream (ATD) and the University of Texas - Austin’s Charles A. Dana Center came together for the first time to co-sponsor the workshop Designing Math Pathways: Building Institutional Capacity and Sustainability in Math. The workshop hosted institutional teams composed of math faculty, administrators, and representatives from advising, and facilitated collaboration on a holistic math redesign approach to improving student success. During the convening teams engaged in sessions intended for both cross-functional institutional teams as well as breakout sessions focused on specific roles and responsibilities (i.e., faculty, administrator, advisor). At the conclusion of the workshop, outcomes were reviewed and teams left prepared with specific implementation steps to launch new efforts in math redesign or to further their current work.

Math Pathways Collaboration

ATD became involved with the Dana Center (in addition to Carnegie’s Math Pathways work) when we identified a significant opportunity to help our Network Colleges by sharing our expertise in teaching and learning, faculty professional development, and workshop facilitation with colleagues and event attendees in order to make the connection between the math pathways redesign and institutional change. ATD’s Institutional Capacity Framework, built on the understanding that student success is sustained by a student-centered culture, recognizes that the math pathways work is evidence-based, student-focused and transformational. We understand that transformational change begins with redesign approaches that will improve student outcomes and ultimately their path to completion.

Three Days of Learning and Development

Over 90 participants from 18 colleges attended ATD and the Dana Center’s Designing Math Pathways: Building Institutional Capacity and Sustainability in Math. Of the 18 colleges in attendance, 15 were ATD Network colleges. (See list of colleges below).  Over the course of the three-day workshop, attendees were engaged in plenary sessions that addressed  the nuances of math pathways and barriers to students success. Attendees participated in workshops during which the institutional teams assessed their current progress in math pathways, developed their implementation processes, identified and refined two-month timelines for completion, evaluated their goals for scale, and created plans for communications and engagement. A highlight of the workshop was the step-back consulting exercise led by ATD staff members Rachel Singer, Senior Fellow, and Jon Iuzzini, Associate Director for Teaching & Learning. The exercise helped promote productive and focused group discussion of complex problems that often arise in working toward institutional change. The workshop concluded with breakout sessions focused on work specific to each attendee’s role as math faculty, administrator, or advisor. As a result of a successful workshop and positive feedback, we  are looking forward to continuing this collaboration with both our Dana Center and Carnegie Math Pathways colleagues!

Colleges in Attendance

Bunker Hill Community College*

Central New Mexico Community College*

Chippewa Valley Technical College

College of the Mainland*

Cuyahoga Community College*

Doña Ana Community College*

Dutchess Community College*

El Paso Community College*

Grossmont College*

Heartland Community College

Iowa Western Community College

Montgomery College*

Prince George's Community College*

Schenectady County Community College*

Southern Maine Community College*

Tallahassee Community College*

Valencia College*

Western Technical College*


*Signifies ATD Network College

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