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College Catalog: Special Instructional Programs: Developmental Studies

The purpose of the Developmental Studies program is to assist students in improving their basic academic skills and to help them enhance their self-confidence in preparation for future academic college courses. The developmental courses are identified with a single-digit prefix (1, 2, 3, 4, 5). Since the content includes pre-college basic skills, the courses do not yield college credit. Students are placed into developmental studies courses after an analysis of their scores on placement tests in English, reading, and mathematics, high school transcripts, and other information available concerning their achievement level. Students who are placed in developmental English or mathematics courses may enroll in curriculum courses appropriate to their program of study at the College. Students who are placed in developmental reading are required to complete or co-enroll in reading improvement course before enrolling in curriculum courses.

Developmental mathematics is usually offered in a self-paced lab format. The instructor assists each student by one-on-one contacts during the class. Only those developmental mathematics courses labeled LECTURE on the class schedule have the traditional format of an instructor teaching the whole class at once. Developmental students are encouraged to apply for membership in the College’s Student Support Services Program which is a support system that supplies counseling, tutoring, and culturally enriching activities. Each Developmental Studies course has been developed around specific discipline objectives which have been identified as required for entry into regular curriculum courses. Tests and other diagnostic techniques are administered to determine when the student has met the established course objectives. The student can re-enroll in a Developmental Studies course a second time so that the required objectives can be mastered to the proficiency level required for the intended curriculum. The length of time a student takes to complete the program depends primarily upon the student’s entering ability and the student’s strength of motivation to succeed. Many students can master these skills during the first 15-week semester; others may need to take a year or more of Developmental Studies. In all cases the primary goal of the developmental course is to offer students an opportunity to master the basic academic skills necessary for success in regular college courses.