Putting Educational Innovations into Practice.

CSU fellows,


I'm started this discussion for the purpose of see if there are people across the CSU who are already using ALEKS and who might want to organize their exemplary practices into a larger initiative.   We have been supporting the use of ALEKS across the system within the Early Assessment Program.   The CSU Math Success website  has a section on exam preparation for the ELM  that  provides ALEKS for $45 and we also have opt-in service for online tutoring by NetTutor.   We also provide a course for those students who are "conditioanally ready" for math


The CSU Math Success website is part of the larger EAP communication strategy and if there are campuses who would like to leverage these services, post your interersts.



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Replies to This Discussion

Gerry, We/CSU Monterey Bay and 5 regional partners (4 comm. colleges & UCSC) are working on Developmental Math--Partners are familiar with ALEKS and other suggestions you've posted. Again I encourage any of the CSUs who are interested in what we're working on to contact me. We will have a description of the project and plan by Friday morning 12th....and I will forward this to anyone interested. SCALING UP is an important consideration and perhaps other CSUs which are not quite ready to submit or which are looking to participate in a minor way may want to consider being part of the "scale up!"
We use ALEKS at Bakersfield. It was first used during Summer Bridge and CAMP programs, then was used as a stand-alone course for remediation. It is what we currently use for all math remediation, including all summer programs (Bridge, CAMP, and Early Start). I would be happy to share what we are doing and would love to learn how others are using ALEKS.

Terran Felter
Hi Terran,

Would like our Math Dept Chair, Hongde Hu to communicate with you. Would you pls provide your email. thanks, Arlene

I work with Terran at CSUB and use ALEKS in our chemistry courses. We are using this resource in our general chemistry sequence and have been using it in our preparation for general chemistry course for the past 2 years. We have submitted an NSF proposal to help support further use of ALEKS to enhance the STEM pipeline between CSUB and Bakersfield College. We now use it for about 500 students this fall quarter in both introduction to chemistry and general chemistry and are very interested in learning about any larger system wide initiatives.

Hi David,

How do you envision ALEKS "fitting in" to the NGLC--RFP requirements in either Math or Chemistry?....It's already developed, it's available to all CSUs--- is this "best practices", curriculum integration?

We have a conf. call scheduled with Terran tomorrow, for anyone interested in exploring Developmental Math--from pre-alegrabra thru Calculus...
regards, Arlene
Hi David, Terran, and Arlene,

Your work sounds very exciting and I think other campuses would be interested in your exemplary practices.

Arlene asks a good question about how would this fit into the RFP. Here's my 4 cents (due to inflation, 2 cents isn't worth what it used to be).

1. I think the Learning Analytics track of NGLC would be best given the way that ALEKS works by providing individualized feedback and curriculum delivery based on student performance. I think the Learning Analytics track will be a bit easier to compete in since there are relatively few applciations that have the level of "intelligence" in feedback and personalization that ALEKS has. It certainly has "Deeper Learning" track elements with student mastery of the curriculum the key to the design of ALEKS and "Blended Learning" track elements because students work outside the classroom in a hybrid learning environment.

2. I think we could get McGraw Hill and ALEKS to provide additional support for your projects as part of the grant too - which could be another distinguishing feature of your proposal. I'm just brainstorming here but we could see if they could commit to providng other campuses the training on using ALEKS that incorporates your exemplary practices.

3. It will be key to describe how your use of ALEKS has let to improved student success (increased GPA/class; reduced FIWD grades, etc) in your classes.

4. It will be key to descibe how you integrate ALEKS into the pedagogical strategy of the classes and that these pedagogical strategies can be easily adopted by other faculty and institutions.

Suggestions for next steps:
1. CSUB and CSUMB be the lead the proposal (as PI/co-PI - however it works for you)
2. Write a draft of the preproposal - I've attached the form below.
3. Invite other campuses to join in - I can help get the word out

Thanks Gerry for your considered reply, much appreciated.

We are working now on our regional Consortium. We have a conf. call with Terran today at 2pm which I've also invited David. Our current direction is "Bridging the Divide--Everyone Can Learn Math!"

The integration of ALEKS would be I imagine a component of the proposal, not the centerpiece. It is a commercial software as a tool, not as the innovation per se. The innovation as we now understand comes from the faculty revising curriculum to meet the learning needs of under-prepared students, using technology to engage students (we've had terrific success with collaborative learning using Tablet PCs for math exercises, classroom management, etc. In fact I've brought in 3 HP Technology for Teaching Grants in this arena since 2003).

The Math Professors are meeting tomorrow, Thurs. at Hartnell Comm. College. They have established a videoconf. link via CCC....for the 2 hours of their meeting. While we realize it's a holiday for the CSU, anyone interested in participating pls. contact me asap. By Friday we should have the project proposal concept and details available to share for others to consider joining the initiative.

best, Arlene
Hi Gerry,

CSUSB is in discussions with Northridge and Humboldt on developmental math.

Here is a description of where we are at:

Consortium systematic improvement of achievement and persistence in developmental mathematics in the California State University system

We propose a consortium of several campuses in the California State University system to improve both performance and persistence toward a degree by attacking one of the biggest bottlenecks to obtaining a degree---developmental mathematics

In the CSU system, more than 50% of students enter the university system deficient in mathematics. As a result they need to take developmental math in order to progress. Unfortunately, many students fail developmental math, with many failing more than once, and many dropping out from university altogether.

To remedy this situation we propose a multi-tiered approach, utilizing a combination of proven techniques for assisting students’ achievement and persistence. Specifically, we propose to revamp our developmental mathematics programs using the following components:

a) Modularization of learning content utilizing open educational resources. These resources will be adopted from off-the-shelf best practice modules available via MERLOT and other OER’s as well as through targeted development by consortium faculty of modules that will be made freely available. This effort will leverage the digital marketplace/affordable learning solutions initiative of the CSU chancellor’s office.
b) Use of online tutoring using a combination of MyMathLab and ALEKS
c) Development and implementation of a robust online community of practice for support of students via mentoring with faculty and membership with cohort groups of students all taking developmental math
d) Implementation of a multi-campus hybrid online model in which students can interact with participating mathematics faculty via both online and face to face interactions at any of the participating institutions

Does this gel with what folks are thinking about at MB? Would it make sense for us to combine proposals or would it be better for us to do a separate one?
Hello Jim and all,

It is always better to collaborate than compete, although the larger the collaborative the less $ to go around, however, so be it. The Open Resources means that the proposal could go for the $750K NGLC initiative. The CSU, representing the largest higher ed system in the US, has an enormous need to improve the pedagogy, learning outcomes, passing rates, etc. of Developmental Math...the CSU has the stats to prove its needs.

What I understand from the NGLC is to take PROVEN SUCCESS MODELS and expand these. I think it very beneficial for us to speak to understand what MB has as proven success (passing rates in developmental math went from low 70s to mid 90% over the past few years, and make the model agile/flexible by integrating components that CSUB, Humboldt and Northridge are suggesting.

Also, no matter what happens, collaboration fosters other grant opportunities for the CSU--i.e. down the road for other funding sources too--

Yesterday the consortium--4 comm. colleges, CSUMB, UCSC met regarding the project plan. I do not yet know those outcomes as I was traveling. Let's see how these may meld with what you all are suggesting. Again in this NGLC collaboration can offer better opps for success, just by the sheer numbers of students and faculty that we represent.

regards, Arlene
Hi Arlene,

I agree--I think that our developing consortium brings success in the online communities of practice (e.g. the Student Assistance in Learning), and the positive effects of MyMathLab in college algebra....

Do you think that the projects are complementary?

Best wishes,


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