New analysis shows Delaware college-going, remediation rates rise

    (AP Photo/George Lange)

    (AP Photo/George Lange)

    The proportion of Delaware students attending college rose sharply in 2014, so too did the percentage requiring remediation once they arrived.

    That’s according to Delaware’s most recent College Success Report, an annual state analysis that examines higher education outcomes.

    Among those Delawareans who graduated high school in 2014, 57 percent went on to either a four- or two-year college. That’s up from 48 percent in 2013 and 51 percent in 2012.

    But while more students matriculated to higher-ed, data suggests an increasing percentage were unprepared for the journey.

    Among 2014 grads who attended college in Delaware, 42 percent were required to take at least one remedial course. For the class of 2013 that number was 37 percent. The year prior it was 44 percent.

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    Students must take a remedial course if their college determines they aren’t ready for college-level work in a particular subject. Students don’t receive credit for remedial coursework, and research suggests that the added time and costs of these courses can discourage students from earning a degree.

    The report also detailed what kinds of students tend to end up in remediation. Delaware determines whether students are “college-ready” by using a pre-determined cut score on the SAT. Among those who scored lower than the cut score and attended an in-state school, 55 percent required remediation, according to Tuesday’s report. Compare that to just three percent of those who scored at or above the cut score.

    The final math and English courses a student takes in high school also correlates to the likelihood he or she winds up in remediation. Just seven percent of Delaware students who took calculus their senior year needed remediation. Meanwhile, 30 percent of pre-calculus students, 41 percent of statistics students, and 64 percent of Algebra II students took remedial math in college. A plurality of Delaware seniors took statistics, according to the report.

    On the English side of the ledger, students fared far better if they took an Advanced Placement or an honors class their senior year.

    The chart below shows higher-ed outcomes for Delaware students between 2012 and 2014.

    % of grads matriculating to college % of college-goers requiring remediation (in-state only)
    2014 57 42
    2013 48 37
    2012 51 44

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