Monday, April 17, 2017
Stakes Aren’t Cheap
Apropos your lead observation, the tragedy of Florida is that the legislature made it illegal to give the state placement test to those HS grads exempted from remediation, even for pure advising or research reasons. Imagine if we could have had detailed data on the success at various levels of math coupled to data on placement scores for students who skipped remediation. This would be data about everyone, not just the clever ones who found a way to evade the system. Fine grained data like that would identify just how bad the tests were and help set new cut scores for both true remediation and additional supportive classes. But, no, they didn't fix it even when it was pointed out to them.
As for multifactor placement, I consider it outrageous that this cannot be done with computers -- right now, today. HS transcipts should arrive electronically, already coded so people don't have to read them. (Or, at minimum, so ones from your own state don't require human interpretation.) Within one year, people in the state education bureaucracy could generate the heuristics to automate advising and placement for math and English based on HS classes, SAT or ACT scores, HS exit exams, and a placement test. The only cost would be replacing lawyers in the state bureaucracy with people who can do things, like think and use computers.
Could you expand on this? I'm confused about how for-profits would want to do less remediation. The two things I"m confused about:
1) If the student needs remediation it's because they lack the skills/knowledge to move into a higher level course (at least, in a perfect world this should be true).
If they're bumped into a higher level course doesn't that just mean that they'll fail at a higher rate there?
2) Don't for-profits want people to pay for as many courses as possible?
Wouldn't it be great for their bottom line to have students take more (remedial) courses?
I'm genuinely confused about these and would love to know where I'm going wrong.