EvCC looks for ways to solve students’ math problems

EVERETT — Math can be a barrier for students seeking a college degree.

To help figure out which strategies work best to help students succeed in math, Everett Community College has been awarded a $39,500 grant.

The grant is from College Spark Washington, a Seattle-based foundation that pays for programs to help low-income students get ready for college and earn their degrees.

The research will begin this summer, building on work that’s been done over the past five to six years, said Christopher Quarles, a math instructor at the college.

The majority of students who come to community colleges in Washington state, including EvCC, need help with remedial math, said Rachel Clements, program officer for College Spark Washington.

One of the biggest stumbling blocks for students, particularly those from low-income families, is graduating from high school. Once that hurdle is cleared, standardized tests show they’re not ready for the rigors of college-level classes.

“They’re not ready for college-level math,” Quarles said. “So the question is how can we help these students get to college level math?”

Of all the students who go into remedial classes in either math or English, fewer than 20 percent ever go on to earn college-level credits in those subjects, Clements said.

Students have to pay for the remedial classes, which are non-credit. “They’re putting in time and money and not earning credits toward a degree,” she said. “A lot get discouraged and leave. A number don’t make it through the course work.”

Completing a math course is a requirement in a number of fields of study, from engineering to social science and liberal arts majors, Quarles said.

One of the questions he is trying to answer with the grant is whether changes made to restructure the math course over the past few years have been effective and whether more changes still need to be made, he said.

Sharon Salyer: 425-339-3486 or salyer@heraldnet.com.

More in Local News

Families begin relocating from public housing complex

Baker Heights is in need of repairs deemed to costly to make, and will be demolished and replaced.

Trail work by juvenile offenders builds resumes, confidence

Kayak Point trails were built out this year by groups from Denney Juvenile Justice Center.

Small fire breaks out at haunted house in Everett

Plastic that was supposed to be noncombustable was sitting next to a hot lightbulb.

Rules of the road for ‘extra-fast pedestrians’ — skateboarders

State traffic law defines them as pedestrians, and yet they are often in the middle of the street.

Distress beacon leads rescuers to Pacific Crest Trail hikers

Two men in their 20s had encountered snow and waited two nights for a helicopter rescue.

City of Everett to give $400K to a nonprofit housing project

The city expects to enter a contract with HopeWorks, an affiliate of Housing Hope.

Everett mayoral campaign is one of the priciest ever

Many campaign donors are giving to both Cassie Franklin and Judy Tuohy.

Some damage undone: Thousands of heroin needles removed

Hand Up Project volunteers cleaned up a patch of woods that some of them had occupied near Everett.

Volunteers clean up homeless camp infested with garbage

The organization’s founder used to live and do drugs in the same woods.

Most Read