Joe Wyatt
Published August 16, 2017

A new law emerged from the Texas Legislature in June – signed by the governor – which requires the use of corequisite remediation for college students in developmental education courses.

Corequiste remediation is the alignment of developmental courses with credit-bearing courses, so that underprepared students can be placed simultaneously in both and thus achieve college success at a faster pace.

Amarillo College is on the forefront of this endeavor, having already been a utilizing corequisite remediation model for several years now and have seen great success through this method. Due to the achievements at AC, experts at the college were asked to share expertise with peer institutions state wide.

At the urging of conference organizers, two AC educators served as presenters at The Corequisite Conference in July. The event was co-sponsored by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board and the Texas Success Initiative Professional Development Program.

Edie Carter, AC’s dean of academic success, and Nancy Forrest, instructor of reading, served as presenters for prominent breakout sessions at the conference, which was conducted July 6-7 at Austin Community College.

The AC duo co-presented a session titled “Corequisite Models Accelerate Student Success.” Carter also served as a panelist for a discussion about “Corequsite Models” and participated in a roundtable in which her focus was on “Faculty Buy-In.”

“We have found the corequisite model to be highly effective at Amarillo College,” Carter said. “Students are encouraged to get the developmental education they need, and to get valuable college credit at the same time. We were asked to present our strategies in hopes they could be used to construct a template that other colleges might use to establish corequisite models of their own.

“We explained how our new eight-week course model has proven to be a perfect fit for the corequisite model,” Carter said, “and we presented some of our student-success data as evidence that what we are doing is working.”

AC paired developmental courses in basic grammar and writing with Composition I, a credit-bearing course, and the success rate among developmental students rose from 73 percent in fall 2015 to 77 percent in fall 2016.

Over that same time frame, by pairing developmental reading with credit-bearing General Psychology, the success rate for developmental students rose from 77 to 81 percent.

The new law gives all of the state's public colleges and universities that have developmental education programs until 2018 to have 25 percent of their developmental students enrolled in a corequisite course. The mandate increases to 50 percent by 2019 and by 2020 to 75 percent.

Amarillo College is not only well ahead of the compliance curve, it is sharing its successful methodology with others.