Teachers College, Columbia University

Putting Learning at the Center: Looking Ahead to the Next Decade of Community College Reform

Date and Time: August 22, 2019 9:30 a.m.–10:45 a.m.
Location: Baltimore, MD
Venue: Community College of Baltimore County, Essex Campus | Romadka College Center

In this talk, CCRC's Susan Bickerstaff invited faculty to consider the strides the field has made over the last decade in its thinking on developmental education. Ten years ago, the problem of a multi-course sequence was only recently identified, the best solutions were not obvious, and scaling up promising practices was a major preoccupation. Today, the field has coalesced around a set of best practices—including co-requisite remediation, mathematics pathways, and placement reform—and in many contexts, those approaches are being implemented at scale. Bickerstaff argued that the great challenge in the next decade of reform will be to put learning at the center of our institutional improvement efforts. This will require institutional commitment to an assessment process that yields usable information for faculty, strong curricular materials aligned with student learning goals and evidence-based instructional practices, and a multi-faceted support system that helps faculty evaluate and improve their teaching. Bickerstaff drew on examples from K–12 and CCRC research to imagine what the community college reform landscape might look like 10 years in the future.

A video of the presentation is available here:


Senior Research Associate and Program Lead
Community College Research Center