Remedial math class

High school Senior Wyatt Matern studies for his upcoming exams in order to graduate in the spring. He has already applied to several colleges in hopes to get accepted.

Paige Backman

pbackman@uwyo.edu

Any first-year student at the University of Wyoming is encouraged to meet with an advisor to begin registering for classes to help with academic goals.

Often remedial students are placed in a 0900 math class for one reason or another. The benefits and pit falls of these remedial classes are often unclear.

“My primary role is advising undeclared students,” Ben Herdt, an advisor for academic advising and career services, said. “Around 50 percent of my case load is in a 0900 math class.”

Herdt said both in-state and out-of-state students could be placed in a 0900 math class. “A big reason is because a lot of students refuse to take the math placement exam,” he said.

The math placement exam is not required and can be a small item on a student’s to-do list when coming to the university, Herdt said. Students often choose not to take a math test or class in the summer.

The Math 0900 courses count toward credit as a full-time student, but the class does not count toward the 120 credits needed to earn a degree.

“What really hurts Wyoming residents is that the Hathaway Scholarship doesn’t recognize the class,” Herdt said.

The 0900 classes are part of LCCC credits, rather than UW credits.

David Anton, UW math professor, said the remedial courses are more a first year student issue than a community college transfer issue. He teaches sections of math 1000, a pre-requisite for any upper level math course.

On a Wyoming level, Anton said he believes the enrollment in remedial math classes is not overwhelmingly swayed toward in-state student.

“About a quarter of in-state students and a third of out-of-state students,” Anton said.

The university has programs in place to help students succeed in math courses. Math 1080 is offered as a supplemental course to those who enroll in Math 1000 without the proper math placement exam scores. There is a summer program students may take in to avoid falling behind in math.

“Access without support is not opportunity,” Herdt said.

Herdt said the university offers the courses as an attempt to assist students in reaching academic goals with the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed.

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