Basic Skills Reform

The original iteration of this intervention was to implement the use of Supplemental Instructors (SIs) in all of our Basic Skills course, including at all sites and online.  At the time, we used SIs in some of the Basic Skills and gateway courses, which had shown early signs of success.  The intention was to fully implement the intervention in all Basic Skills courses, where retention and success in courses is low, as well as the progression through the sequence and into college level courses.  The college has revised this intervention based on lessons learned during implementation.  Based on early, formative evaluation of the intervention, logistical imitations were identified: the decentralized approach to the intervention would not work and its scope was too limited to address the significant gaps in basic skills completion.  Immediately it was challenging to identify supplemental instructors, particularly in math.  Based on the unsuccessful implementation in the fall, the ATD team and coaches identified revision of the intervention:

-Hire a full-time learning assistance coordinator to expand and coordinate learning support services at all sites and online.
-Develop writing and math labs to support completion of English and math courses.
-Require basic skills students to participate in writing and math lab activities.
-Staff writing and math labs with a core of full-time faculty as part of load.


One of the identified ATD strategies for the college was the implementation of writing and math labs within the Learning Assistance Center to provide additional support for Basic Skills courses.  This strategy has been implemented and is currently staffed by our English and math faculty, both full- and part-time.

As part of the evaluation associated with the writing and math lab implementation, the college identified the need to hire a full-time, permanent position coordinating the learning support programs for the college.  This position began in the 15-16 school year.


The writing and math labs have gained momentum in both hours offered and student usage, particularly in math.  However, there is not currently a process in place to ensure a minimum number of hours each semester in both the writing and math lab hours; it is currently based on the willingness of full-time and adjunct faculty members to volunteer for the assignment. This approach produced only 6.5 English hours during the week in the spring 2016 (compared to 19 in math) and is inconsistent


Develop a process for systematizing and ensuring a minimum number of hours available each semester for the writing and math labs.  Analyze usage statistics, identify the highest demand periods and times for students, and schedule hours accordingly.

Expand the writing and math labs to two extension sites (Kern River Valley and the Eastern Sierra College Center) as well as into the online environment.

ID 15827

To contact this college about this intervention, take note of the ID above, ID #15827, 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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