

School  Town Population  Enrollment  % Free/Red. Lunch  % Underrep. Minorities  Middle Sch. Curr. 

Washington  8,800  484  14.0  27.9  STEM 
Adams  11,285  910  26.6  7.3  CMP 
Jefferson  14,532  1,436  14.2  2.3  CMP 
Students completed achievement tests at the beginning of grade 9 and at the end of each school year. The Iowa Tests of Educational Development  Quantitative Thinking (ITEDQ) was administered to all students at the beginning of grade 9. School ITEDQ means for students at the beginning of grade 9 were at the 56th, 64th, and 66th national student percentiles, respectively. Hence, the students in these schools were somewhat above the national average in mathematics achievement upon entering high school.
Data in this report of the CPMP longitudinal study were drawn from the results of a survey that 2001 graduates completed in January 2002, supplemented by data drawn from the records of two universities that many graduates of two of the schools attended (Western Michigan University and Grand Valley State University). Table 2 reports the number of 2001 graduates, number of graduates for whom we have postsecondary data, and the number of those who reported attending a fouryear college/university or a community college in Fall 2001. The fact that nearly all respondents went directly into postsecondary education is partly due to the relative difficulty in contacting those who entered the work force.
School  2001 Graduates  PostHigh Respondents  College or University  Community College  Work 

Washington  58  14  12  2  0 
Adams  159  47  39  6  2 
Jefferson  353  132  94  36  2 
This report focuses on the preparation of the graduates for college or university mathematics, a total of 145 students from the three school districts. These graduates attended 39 different institutions across the country. To provide points of comparison, we obtained records from two major universities, the University of Iowa (UI) for all freshmen in Fall 2002 and Western Michigan University (WMU) for all freshmen in Fall 2001. Mean ACT Mathematics and ACT Composite scores for these three groups are given in Table 3. As shown, the mean of both scores for the CorePlus Mathematics graduates was between the two comparison groups. Seventeen of the CorePlus Mathematics graduates took the SAT rather than the ACT.
ACT Math  ACT Composite  

N  Mean  SD  Mean  SD  
CorePlus Mathematics  128  22.45  4.71  23.29  3.98 
University of Iowa  3,998  24.32  4.33  24.58  3.71 
Western Michigan  4,323  22.05  4.06  22.32  3.39 
Comparison
of All Freshmen
The percents of students in each group enrolling in various mathematics
courses and the mean of their grades in each course are given in Table
4. The large difference between UI and WMU is mainly due to differing
mathematics requirements. At UI, students are not required to take a
mathematics course; rather they have a quantitative literacy requirement
that can be met with a number of courses other than mathematics. At WMU,
a mathematics course is required of all students, and many take precalculus
in their first semester.
CorePlus Mathematics  University of Iowa  Western Michigan University  

Math Course  N (%)  Mean  N (%)  Mean  N (%)  Mean 
None  56 (38.6)    2,121 (53.1)    1,214 (28.1)   
Rem. Algebra  10 (6.9)  2.12  203 (5.1)  2.74  243 (5.6)  2.54 
Precalculus  52 (35.9)  2.64  1,170 (29.3)  2.71  2,406 (55.7)  2.44 
Calculus I  15 (10.3  3.10  327 (8.2)  2.80  321 (7.4)  2.47 
Calculus II  8 (5.5)  2.81  117 (2.9)  3.33  9 (0.2)  2.83 
Statistics  4 (2.8)  3.50  228 (5.7)  2.73  119 (2.8)  2.42 
Again, the CorePlus Mathematics graduates tend to fall between UI and WMU in percent taking each course. Exceptions are Remedial Algebra, Calculus I, and Calculus II, each of which had a higher percentage of CorePlus Mathematics enrollees than either of the two university groups. The overall group differences, except for the one between UI and WMU, explained above, do not appear to be greater than one would expect by chance.
There is also no clear pattern in mean grades. The CorePlus Mathematics graduates' remedial algebra grades are lower; but CorePlus Mathematics graduates in Calculus I and Statistics are higher than the two comparison groups. WMU grades are somewhat lower than the other two groups in most courses. That may be because WMU students are not as strong in entering mathematics achievement (see ACT score means), or it may just be institutional differences in grading practices.
Comparison
by High School Mathematics Background
A perusal of the University of Iowa data makes it clear that students'
college mathematics coursetaking and grades differ greatly by the number
of high school mathematics courses students completed successfully. (Unfortunately,
data on mathematics courses taken in high school by WMU students is not
available.) Of the CorePlus Mathematics graduates for whom we have data,
four completed just two years of college preparatory mathematics and
18 completed
three
years; in each case, too few students to provide reliable information.
Therefore, we did separate analyses of coursetaking and grades for students
who completed four years of high school mathematics (66) and for those
who completed five years (57). The data for those taking four years of
high school mathematics is given in Table 5.
CorePlus Mathematics  University of Iowa  

Math Course  N (%)  Mean  N (%)  Mean 
None  22 (33.3)    837 (48.7)   
Rem. Algebra  5 (7.6)  2.53  73 (4.2)  3.13 
Precalculus  31 (47.0)  2.59  591 (34.4)  2.59 
Calculus I  7 (10.6)  3.07  107 (6.2)  2.55 
Calculus II  0 (0.0)    22 (1.3)  3.45 
Statistics  1 (1.5)  4.00  90 (5.2)  2.68 
A higher percentage of CorePlus Mathematics students took a mathematics course in their first semester, and a higher percentage of UI students completed a statistics course. These differences are probably due to the quantitative literacy requirement at UI, described above. A statistics course will satisfy that requirement. CorePlus Mathematics graduates' grades in Remedial Algebra are lower than those of UI freshmen, but CorePlus Mathematics graduates' grades in Calculus I are higher. Overall, there does not appear to be any strong pattern of differences.
The data for students taking five years of high school mathematics is given in Table 6. In the CorePlus Mathematics schools, students in this category completed the four CorePlus Mathematics courses and either AP Statistics or AP Calculus. Nine students were exceptions as they were accelerated in grade 8, and they completed both AP Statistics and AP Calculus. There do not seem to be notable differences between the results for the two groups of students.
CorePlus Mathematics  University of Iowa  

Math Course  N (%)  Mean  N (%)  Mean 
None  23 (40.4)    444 (37.7)   
Rem. Algebra  1 (1.8)  1.50  9 (0.8)  2.67 
Precalculus  14 (24.6)  3.14  378 (32.1)  3.04 
Calculus I  8 (14.0)  3.13  204 (17.3)  2.97 
Calculus II  8 (14.0)  2.81  93 (7.9)  3.30 
Statistics  3 (5.3)  3.33  51 (4.3)  3.10 
Summary
In sum, these 145 students entered college after completing as many
as seven years of Standardsbased curricula. There are no patterns
of deficiency
overall or when high school mathematics background is kept constant.
In their first college semester, CorePlus Mathematics graduates with
similar high school mathematics backgrounds (and somewhat lower ACT scores)
took various college mathematics courses through Calculus II at similar
frequencies and with similar success rates as students from more traditional
high school mathematics programs.
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