Learning Communities consist of two classes in different disciplines linked at registration and providing shared content by a team of instructors and a counselor during adjoined class periods. The first Learning Communities focused on improving the success rates for students requiring developmental English. Currently, NEC Learning Communities support first-time students (not including transfers) whose algebra proficiency is below college level. Remediation math courses for these students are linked with NEC’s college success course. For example, Learning Communities at the NEC Northline Campus link Math 0306 or Math 0308 with the GUST 1270/0170 career and college success course. This six-credit Learning Community sequence contains one college transfer credit.
From spring 2006 through spring 2007, 234 students participated in Learning Communities, 172 of whom were Latino. The data from fall 2007 through spring 2008 are in the process of being compiled and analyzed; however, the program is showing promising medium term results. For example, in spring 2006, Latino students in Learning Communities were noticeably successful in course completion: 92.3% of them completed their courses, while only 67.5% of Latinos in regular classes did so. The figures for spring 2007 were 81.5% for Learning Communities, compared to 77.8% for regular classes.
Overall, students in Learning Communities successfully completed their Learning Community classes at a 72.8% rate, and their first fall semester classes at a 68.9% rate. Hispanics had the most successful course completion rate: 83.3% of Hispanic students completed their linked Learning Community classes.
This program was recognized as an Honorable Mention for making innovative and/or significant improvement in increasing Latino student success.