Cal State University to drop placement tests, remedial class – California News

Cal State University to drop placement tests, remedial class – California News

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — California State University’s 23 campuses are eliminating math and English placement exams for incoming freshman and ending mandatory remedial courses that some students complained delayed their coursework.

The changes are part of a broader plan aimed at increasing graduation rates at the nation’s largest public university system.

Chancellor Timothy P. White announced the changes in an executive order issued late Wednesday to all campus presidents, saying that CSU’s longstanding exams used to assess student readiness will be retired starting in fall 2018.

Instead, schools will look at students’ SAT and ACT scores along with high school grades and Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate scores to determine course placement, which administrators say are a better measure of a student’s abilities.


Nearly 40 percent of incoming freshman, or some 25,000 students, are typically placed in remedial courses that often don’t count toward their degree, Executive Vice Chancellor Loren Blanchard said in a separate memo.

The new policy “aims to address inequities in college readiness head-on in order to close gaps in degree attainment and afford all students the opportunity to succeed,” Blanchard said.

Only 20 percent of CSU students graduate within four years. The university system wants to double its four-year graduation rate by 2025.

Students who took the remedial courses spent time and money on non-credit classes, which meant it took them longer to get a degree. Some students couldn’t afford the extended time in school or were so frustrated by the process they dropped out,…

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