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The City University of New York system ended the last of its remedial math and English courses this fall, according to a press release sent last week. The classes have been replaced by corequisite courses, which offer credit and include extra academic supports.

The move is the culmination of a remedial education reform effort at CUNY that started in 2016. At the time, 78 percent of new students in CUNY associate degree programs were placed in a remedial class in at least one subject. Most of these students had low course completion, retention and graduation rates. For example, students in remedial math were about half as likely to earn an associate degree in three years compared to their peers, according to data from the system.

Since CUNY began transitioning to corequisite courses in 2016, the share of first-year students in associate degree programs who earned math credit in their first two semesters rose from 36 percent to 50 percent in 2020.

“Replacing the outdated remedial approach with a more effective, equitable and evidence-based system is an important advance in our ongoing mission to provide our students with educational opportunity and the support they need to succeed,” Chancellor Félix V. Matos Rodríguez said in the release. “I am also proud that these systemic CUNY changes and reforms were spearheaded by our academic leadership and faculty, and they exemplify our steadfast commitment to transforming the CUNY system to meet the current needs of New Yorkers. The elimination of traditional remedial courses on all campuses is an important milestone on this journey.”

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