Alternate Placement Methods: Math and English

Based on a large-scale experiment using the ALEKS placement tool for mathematics, Harper has moved toward full implementation of ALEKS to replace COMPASS. The experiment was designed to test and validate the ALEKS tool for use on Harper's campus. Students who came to campus for placement testing were randomly assigned to take either the COMPASS test (the current placement tool) or one of two ALEKS tests.  One ALEKS test allowed for two retakes with no remediation required, the other ALEKS test allowed for up to 5 retakes with remediation required.  The results of the experiment demonstrated that ALEKS students (with or without remediation) were more likely to place into college level mathematics.  Additionally, students who enrolled in college level courses based on ALEKS  with 5 retakes and required remediation were 19% more likely to receive a ‘C’ or better relative to the COMPASS test.   The decision to move towards ALEKS was made based on these results indicating more accurate placement. The math department has also approved the use of high school GPA for placement effective for spring 2017 enrollment.

The English Department at Harper College will be using multiple methods of placement into reading and writing courses this coming academic year.  Based on a body of evidence suggesting that high school GPA can be an accurate placement method, the English Department will be using high school GPA (in addition to ACT scores) to place students in to writing courses.  Additioanlly, a diagnostic essay is being developed for students who do not place into credit-bearing courses based on GPA or ACT scores.These placement methods will replace the current placement tool, COMPASS.

ID 15768

To contact this college about this intervention, take note of the ID above, ID #15768, and then fill out the intervention contact request form

Please note that for security purposes, contact information can only be provided to known contacts at active Achieving the Dream institutions.

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