Gateway Courses Aim to Smoothen Transition to Colleges

The Gateway Course represents the initial college-level course in a specific subject, and achieving passing grades in mathematics and English serves as the initial academic milestones on the path towards obtaining a degree. A strong foundation is crucial but nationally, only 16% of community college students complete Gateway courses in Math and English in the first year. 

Results have shown that even the lowest performing students in high school are most likely to complete when placed into college-level courses. This is the Corequisite model, a pilot of which was conducted for underprepared students of KCTCS in 2016 and it led to great success. Success in Gateway English jumped from 34% in 2015 to 54% in 2016 and the success rate in college algebra rose from 18% in 2015 to 52% in 2016. 

Key priorities in the success of Gateway courses is Placement, Pedagogy and Faculty with the latter having the strongest influence on success. Two key teaching techniques have been found to be effective – Culturally responsive teaching and Just in-time teaching. 

Kentucky’s Student Success Framework establishes a vital connection between the success of Gateway Courses and other key priorities related to student achievement.

Gateway Course for Student Success
Source: Kentucky Student Success Collaborative