Our current projects are related and synergistic in focusing on state and national curriculum in mathematics and quantitative methods courses for students completing associate’s degrees or applied baccalaureate (AB) degrees.
Transitioning Learners to Calculus in Community Colleges
Transitioning Learners to Calculus in Community Colleges (TLC3) is a research project aimed at transforming institutional approaches to matriculating STEM majors into and through Calculus II in community colleges, focusing on under-represented minority students (URM). Burn serves as Principal Investigator and Gerhard as consultant on TLC3.
Support for this work is provided by the National Science Foundation’s Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE) program under Awards 1625918, 1625387, 1625946, 1625891. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.
Math Pathways to Completion (MPC)
Math Pathways to Completion is a multi-state project (Arkansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Oklahoma and Washington) focused on establishing and implementing a statewide vision for math pathways. The overall project goal state is to make that vision a reality at all public higher education institutions, dramatically improving the success of students in developmental and entry-level college mathematics courses by clarifying and expanding appropriate math pathways for students across the state. Burn serves as co-chair of the Washington MPC leadership team, and Gerhard serves as a critical friend to the MPC project.
Teaching in Applied Baccalaureate (AB) programs
Burn and Gerhard currently teach applied quantitative methods courses in AB programs at Highline College and Seattle Central College. The state of Washington currently offers over 65 AB programs with 2000 students enrolled at over 20 colleges. In fact, 16 of the 34 colleges overseen by the SBCTC are now classified as 4-year public institutions in IPEDS. To secure accreditation, AB programs in Washington need to build on existing Associate of Applied Sciences [AAS] degrees and to articulate with at least one Master’s degree program at a regional college. Thus, AB programs are developed to meet specific workforce needs while also providing opportunities for students to pursue advanced degrees. The success of the students in these programs is a significant issue for the state and the colleges involved, as well as for the faculty, staff, and students.
Teaching in the AB is an emerging area of our research. We maintain that faculty teaching in the AB, regardless of professional-technical experience, will find differences in the new environment. For example, as the number of BAS programs grow, there will be more and more students doing their third and fourth years as undergraduates in the community college.