Math Pathways Agreement Reached at UNC System

May 4, 2020

Each institution in the University of North Carolina system is formally committing to the core recommendations of System Math Pathways.

The pathways programs aims to remove roadblocks for students who may need developmental education support.

All 17 colleges in the system have now committed to getting students to take their first math course within their first 30 hours of enrollment, according to a news release. Often, students who need extra help fall behind with remedial education courses that don't count for credit, which can impede their progress through the rest of the curriculum. Across the system, only two-thirds of students pass their entry-level math course.

Some gateway math courses, such as algebra, can have withdrawal, incomplete, drop or failure rates of nearly 50 percent.

Research shows that creating pathways can help students stay on track to graduate on time. Part of this process includes linking math courses to students' career goals. To this end, all institutions have agreed to establish a recommended math course or sequence of courses for at least two degree clusters.

The institutions also agreed to provide professional development to faculty and advisers involved in these math courses.

“This work reflects the advantages we gain by working together as a system. Whereas most curricular improvements are often pursued by institutions working within their institutional boundaries, Math Pathways has been collaborative from the start,” Kimberly van Noort, chief academic officer for the system, said in the release. “This work reflects our ongoing commitment to improve student success and support equitable access to education. When our work is complete, students from across the state will benefit from more responsive math curriculum and improved transferability and applicability of credits across North Carolina’s higher education institutions.”

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