Skip to comments.Will Dumping Math Requirements Increase College Grad Rates? / worthless college degrees
Posted on 08/23/2012 5:31:40 PM PDT by wintertime
HetchingerEd is offering a rather radical proposal to increase the number of American students who graduate college: dump math. Specifically, the argument is that since many college students, a disproportionately large number of them of an African-American or Hispanic descent, are unprepared to tackle college-level mathematics courses, they might be stymied by a requirement that all those receiving a degree from a particular institution must pass the freshman version of the course.
A fifth of students entering a four-year college dont have the needed math skills to pass the course and are forced into remediation. Nearly half of community college freshmen find themselves in a similar situation. This delay makes it much less likely that they will be able to graduate on time or graduate at all. Only a tenth of community college students who take remedial college courses finish their college programs in 3 years, and only a third of four-year students complete theirs in 6 years.
Those statistics come from a report on remediation published in April by Complete College America. The reports numbers suggest that math requirements may be the primary obstacle to graduation for many students: In many states, a larger percentage of students enroll in remedial math courses than in remedial English courses.
These numbers ignited a debate among education experts with many calling for better algebra preparedness in high school, while an increasingly loud minority suggesting that colleges do away with universal math requirements altogether.
(Excerpt) Read more at educationnews.org ...
Understand math,understand the Universe (except Women)
That means they have had > $120,000 spent on them by twelfth grade. AND THEY CAN'T COUNT!!
Fire every teacher and start over (with vouchers if you want them to learn anything).
yes women are only visiting this universe!
as a math geek with little to no understanding of women, I approve this message.
Just “deem” kids college graduates upon birth.
Well...at least the ones that survive birth.
It is awful thay they were forced into remedial courses in college. Would it not be better to avoid this stigma? Let them take the regular courses, fail them and let them be kicked out of college for subpar academic performance. But at least they are not stigmatized and humiliated.
I like the direction Hillsdale college has taken.
They no longer offer teaching degrees without a 4 year degree in something solid. We have too many teaches who know how to teach but no nothing about the subjects they teach.
If your basic education system, K-12, is turning out graduates that can not handle college level mathematics then you have only two viable solutions:
First, go back to the K-12 system and force it to produce graduates that have competence in college level mathematics, and I don't mean entry level course for a degree in math. But this would upset too many unionized teachers and their associated union overheads.
Or, you reduce the number of high school graduates seeking to enter college to just those who have passed college level entrance mathematics tests. But this would reduce the number of college professors and their associated union overheads.
Or, get rid of the union overheads and improve the level of education at both the K-12 and college levels.
But, then that ain't going to happen either - too many union jobs lost.
Printing diplomas on the back of cereal boxes will increase the “grad” rate, too.
Damn! I knew Art History was the ticket.
What college major would you not need math?
I was a phych/poli sci major and had to take a year of statistics. I needed college algebra to be able to take that class, high school algebra would not have cut it.
Do they think that Americans aren’t testing low enough and need to be brought down even more?
Frankly, I have an idea- separation of school and state.
Why not just sell a degree? See? No academic requirements!
The teachers and principals should be ***criminally***charged for fraud for having LIED to the taxpayers, the student, and his parents on **official** government documents ( report cards and high school diploma).
Also....The teachers and principals should be **sued** silly by aggressive malpractice attorneys. Teachers and principals do have malpractice insurance. In any other profession it is **MALPRACTICE*** to lie to a client or patient and fraudulently fill out government forms.
By the way, my own children were in college before they were old enough to drive, therefore, I met **MANY** community college students ( high school graduates) who were literally learning how to add and subtract two digit numbers,, and the multiplication and division algorithms were still a complete mystery to them. For these students to have gone so far as to GRADUATE from high school they had to have had teachers and principals who ** CRIMINALLY**LIED **to the taxpayer, the student, and the parents.
Yeah! I am yelling. I am disgusted. Where are the class action attorneys when kids really need them?
Printing diplomas on the back of cereal boxes will increase the grad rate, too.
This is a fantastic idea. Next to the diploma can be a little coupon that you can take into your school and they could get new computers or books.
I don’t know,,,,, interesting question. I can see some disciplines that would require nothing more than basic Math. History, English, Languages, etc., shouldn’t require a lot of Math. But I don’t think they do. As an Architecture major, I had killer math/engineering requirements. I hated the course called “Statics!” “Put the front wheels of a 25.6 ton tractor trailer, 9.4 feet onto a steel truss bridge. What is the tension or compression on a strut 100.8 feet away?” Problems took two hours to solve,,, with a damn slide rule! I was a designer. I wanted to take my designs to the engineering department and say, “Here’s my design. Figure out how to build it!” Sheesh! That course was abdo-lute Hell! You’d get one problem as homework. I’d get an A one day, and an F the next. 3/4s of the way through, TI introduced the first pocket calculator. Man! What a relief! I actually put a bullet through my slide rule!
Men are Real. Women are Complex.
Hmmm, my daughter started college at 13 and got an A in the only math class for her English major requirement. High school has turned into all day baby sitting and pc/ sex/ don’t do drugs propaganda. When my oldest daughter was attending community college, her courses were a joke. My middle schooler could have gotten As in them. Basic common sense- the cream floats to the top. College has turned into high school in a wealthy neighborhood. If the students can’t do the work, they shouldn’t be there...oh wait, then there wouldn’t be student loans. Follow the money....
As my elder brother (who is an engineer) points out, the amount of math you have take for a given degree is often directly proportional to the income potential you’ll have after you graduate. Math is the underpinning of the sciences, medicine, and business, and plays a role in a lot of other fields - psychology has its statistics classes, the school of architecture at my alma mater had a killer “structures” class, etc.
If anything, we need more math in college. And I say that as someone who, frankly, struggled in the subject at times.
We’re already suffering the effects of people not knowing math. I’m not talking about calculus, or even algebra, but basic arithmetic.
A woman was hired in a management position at my company, where part of her job is pricing our inventory based on supply & demand to maximize profits. We are a property management company, so this involves pricing rental spaces, and you must do market comparisons. Since you can’t compare apples to oranges, it’s standard practice to compare the rent per square foot, instead of the total market rent.
Now, this woman was new, so a fellow employee who had been handling this job sent her the data on our square footage and rents, separately. She responded to that by asking him what the rent per square foot amounts were. So, she had the numerator, and the denominator, but she could not concieve of how to determine the ratio of those two amounts. She. a college graduate, could not do simple division, even with a spreadsheet sitting in front of her to do the work for her!
And they can knock you back on your axis!
Most women have little to no understanding of math, so it all balances out. Well, not quite, but let’s make believe.
You did what?! You barbarian! You animal! Have you no decency?
I took out my old Sterling plastic slide rule and showed it to a class of pre-calculus students and asked them what they thought it was. No one had a clue.
You’re correct. I attended college in the late ‘90s, and it was going that way even then. I tested out of the basic required math classes, but even starting a few tiers up, we were just reviewing stuff that had been covered sophomore/junior year in high school.
I ended up taking the advanced Physics and Calculus classes that were tailored for Engineering students, just out of boredom.
And airbrushed models are imaginary.
I’ve worked with one person who had a Theatre History major, and another who majored in Archaelogy, with a focus on ancient Rome. Neither of them ended up doing anything in those fields, though the archaeologist now runs a side business selling trendy second hand stuff, including salvaged building fixtures and ornaments, so I guess you could almost consider that related.
“I took out my old Sterling plastic slide rule and showed it to a class of pre-calculus students and asked them what they thought it was. No one had a clue.”
Scoped Ruger Redhawk 44 mag. Blew it to splinters at about 80 yards! Took a couple shots to hit it though. But the satisfaction factor was great! Did the same with that cheap Homelite weed trimmer. Now that was serious fun! Unfortunately, that wonderful pistol was lost in a boating accident! Ya know?
The time for outrage passed about 30 years ago, when even the cakey-est Calculus requirements were dropped almost everywhere. (Little extra inside joke there for the mathematicians.)
The math requirements at most universities are already a joke. Most liberal arts and HDev programs have no requirement more rigorous than "finite math," which is essentially a pre-algebra class, or "symbolic logic" which is, well, reasoning.
The introductory stat courses specifically created for social science majors have even been watered down to the point that the computer does all the math.
Even those silly requirements are often waived by the Dean's office on the basis of the flimsiest excuses: "Quantitative Cognitive Dysfunction" (actually sworn to by a psychiatrist) is one I've personally seen. Work "requirements" are also used. Again, a summer data entry job allowed as "vocational computer skill adequate to satisfy coursework" is one I've seen myself.
Keep in mind that these laughable excuses are accepted as a substitute for coursework that most students are supposed to be capable of in sixth or seventh grade. [That's one hand plus one or two fingers for those of you with Quantitative Cognitive Dysfunction; or if that's too "cerebral" for you, roughly the age you started playing with yourself.]
One of the reasons no one understands economics is that so few understand basic arithmetic. I'm not talking about math. I'm talking about addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. When one corrects the disparity in earning for education in quantified science, programming, engineering, or business math proficiency, almost all of the current "alarming" income disparity "magically" disappears. Telling those people that they may now have a college degree will not change the underlying pathology. They're functionally (sometimes totally) innumerate, and an advanced technological society has no place for them except as dishwashers, Walmart greeters and burger flippers, which means it has no place for the uneducated at all.
I seriously doubt most politicians even understand the difference between a million, a billion, and a trillion. I know our pResident doesn't.
Meanwhile, those who are actually receiving a useful education are increasingly subsidizing these deadbeats. Major universities are now charging from $1000 to $5000 per year additional tuition to business, engineering and science majors. It's a disgrace.
A college degree is an expensive piece of paper. If the students getting them are empty headed dumb asses(which half or more probably are these days), nothing is accomplished. Most of them go on to take ‘placeholder’/HR type jobs in corporate America or government workers that produce nothing. I’ve seen this first hand, and it’s no wonder other nations are passing us by. I’ve seen IT departments where there might be two or three people out of 20 that actually know anything, and the rest just run their mouths all day, schedule meetings, and have meetings about meetings, while all of them make things more difficult on those few that actually know what the hell they are doing.
Be thankful you were an architecture student. We engineers had to take dynamics next. Now all that stuff is rotating at 2500 rpm - what are the forces now!?
You are absolutely right! If more of the citizenry understood compounding interest and exponents, there would be torches and pitchforks in DC, and most every statehouse in America. When interest rates go up, they will be in for a bigtime crash course when we're spending $700 billion per year to 'service' our debt, while those EBT cards and socialist security are cut back.
Let’s eliminate all required courses. Just take 42 electives. Oh, is that too much? Perhaps 21 electives to the Baccalaureate.
I had enough when I hit the partial differential equations course.
If I were an employer these days, a college diploma would be THE LAST THING I’d want to see. The first thing I’d do is check for a pulse and then see if the applicant can actually “fog a mirror”. JMO
Too bad they didn’t teach Kenyan students math a few years ago.
Major universities are now charging from $1000 to $5000 per year additional tuition to business, engineering and science majors. It’s a disgrace.
Wow! I was completely unaware that colleges and universities were doing this.
I struggled with math for decades, until I homeschooled my kids through the Saxon Math curriculum. THEN it finally made sense.
The right curriculum is essential for success in math.
Where I work if you don’t understand at least the basics of calculus (integrals and derivatives), if you don’t live and breath algebra, and if you cannot do boolean logic in your sleep - don’t even apply.
“If more of the citizenry understood compounding interest and exponents, there would be torches and pitchforks in DC, and most every statehouse in America.”
My daughter was a bit worried about her college math class. I looked at the curriculum and she’d done nearly every thing in middle school already (yes, middle school.) The new things she did learn was about compounding interest and how to amortize a mortgage, but then we live in Las Vegas with the highest foreclosure rate in the U.S.
I started as a psych major in college. I had to take calculus. I ended up going into nursing. The idea of everyone with a pocket calculator was still a rather new concept. We had to figure out IV drip rates and emergency med dosages in our heads. In NICU, we had to figure out emergency meds according to micro-grams per kilo, per hour, or one-time dose, and possibly how diluted, per kilo. Now, the NICUs have laminated cheat sheets and no one needs a calculator. Not that many nurses now know how to even do the calculations anymore, even with a calculator. God help you if the cheat sheet gets lost.
Must not interfere with the revenue streams of Colleges and Universities.
Yeah! But you guys were supposed to do that! Your were supposed to solve my complex design problems! That was your job,,,, not mine!
Yep. I just paid a $542 differential for the first junior year semester on Friday for #1 son, who is in biochemistry/microbiology. They don’t even try to hide it.
There are 10 types of people in this world. Those who understand binary and those who don’t.
It's sad to see that the current vision, pushed by College Profs and the Education Establishment no less, of what a well rounded Liberal Arts education should consist of and how Liberal Arts grads are supposed to relate the world and at what intellectual level they should operate at has fallen so low.
In the past, Liberal Arts grads and their Profs always prided themselves as the ultimate in well rounded generalists who relied on clear, critical thinking honed by a working knowledge of History, the Arts, the Physical Sciences, the Social Sciences, Philosophy and Logic and basic Mathematical principals (in many older, traditional schools Math was actually an adjunct to the Philosophy Dept) that more than made up for what it lacked in depth it more than made up for by the breadth of exposure to all diverse aspects of intellectual endeavor.
It's too bad that the goal of a University education is no longer to teach people how to think, but is instead to get them to graduate with a Diploma that is becoming an increasingly worthless piece of paper credentials.