Percentage of students completing developmental education course requirements in the first year
First-time degree-seeking students enrolled at Achieving the Dream colleges in fall 2004 and 2005 who were referred to developmental education
Overall, 15 percent of students who were referred to developmental education completed developmental education requirements in the first year. Completion rates were higher at institutions with one level of referral than at institutions with multiple levels of referral (23 percent vs. 13 percent). However, students at institutions with multiple levels of referral were more likely to complete some developmental education requirements than students at institutions with one level of referral (42 percent vs. 30 percent).
Most beginning community college students must complete at least one developmental education course in mathematics or English (reading, writing, or both), and many must complete multiple courses in one or more subjects. Completing the highest-level developmental course in a subject is the final precollege milestone and is often required to transfer to a four-year institution or to earn a certificate or associate degree.