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Assessing the Effectiveness of Quantway: A Multilevel Model with Propensity Score Matching

By Hiroyuki Yamada, Angel Bohannon, and Alicia Grunow

This study assessed the effectiveness of the developmental math course, Quantway 1, between the spring of 2012 and the fall of 2014. A hierarchical linear modeling technique was used to conduct propensity score matching across 37 student characteristics in order to compare the course performance of Quantway 1 students with matched comparison students in traditional developmental math courses. Quantway 1 students demonstrated significantly higher odds of success than matched comparison students in fulfilling developmental math course requirements. Additionally, Quantway 1 effects were positive across all sex and race/ethnicity subgroups as well as in nearly all classrooms and colleges. This study provided robust evidence that Quantway 1 increases student success in fulfilling developmental math requirements and advances equity in student outcomes. Directions for future work are suggested.

Quantway is a Carnegie Math Pathways initiative which redesigns the content, pedagogy, and structure of traditional developmental math courses to simultaneously tackle traditional barriers of student success and support a broader range of developmental students in achieving their math potential. Specifically, Quantway is a quantitative reasoning sequence that is comprised of a single term developmental math course called Quantway 1 and a college-level math course called Quantway 2.