Redesign Developmental Education - Process

Redesign Developmental Education - Process

Developmental, Remedial, Math, Reading/English, Redesign
  • Academic Programs
Colorado Community College System (CO)
  • Institutions
  • Systems


Nationally, students spend time and money in developmental education (DE). They spend their resources on these courses before they ever have the opportunitiy to access college coursework. In Colorado, a group of faculty and administrators were charged with examining DE and creating a new structure that would decrease the amount of time, number of credits, and the number of courses that students take in DE.

  • Review and clarify the purpose of developmental education and analyze implications for policy and practice resulting from a clarified purpose.

  • Review current system policies and practices related to developmental education and propose revisions that will promote greater student success in alignment with sound academic principles and practice.

  • Investigate and analyze measures of success, data reports and studies on success of developmental education students.

  • Examine structures for developmental education, highlighting innovative and successful strategies, improving the student experience and identifying barriers to success.

  • On the basis of a comprehensive review, recommend broad strategies and specific initiatives related to developmental education that should be pursued by Colorado's Community College System Colleges, leading to enhanced outcomes for student learning and success.


The task force redesign process took 18 months and allowed the Colorado Community College System to develop new policies for delivery of developmental education.

Process narrative: - Adopted policy - Faculty sharing - Lists of presentations for taskforce information - Complete annotated bibliography of DE resources and data - Enrollment projections with redesgin - Course descriptions

  • Completing the implementation of the CCCS remedial task force recommendations by fall term of 2014

  • Student completion of college level math course

  • Student completion of college level English course

  • Student completion of a college level discipline course paired with Composition and Reading support.

Anticipated outcomes: All students will have access to a college course after a semester in developmental education. Most students will be able to immediately enter a college course with co-requisite developemental support. Students will spend less time and money on developmental courses. More students will attempt and complete gatekeeper college courses.

More students will be able to access and complete gatekeeper courses. This will eventually impact overall college and program completion rates.


  • Need champions
  • Process is so important
  • Give people the time and resources to come to the redesign
  • Make the process as transparent as possible
  • Work with DHE, DE, legislative bodies, local foundations – what’s best for our students
  • Focus on data informed decisions and decision making
  • We leveraged a Complete College America and a TAACCCT Department of Labor grant to facilitate this process

  • Need project champions at each impacted institution

  • Focus the group on data informed decision making

  • Colleges needed direction, time and resources to accomplish redesign

  • Make the process as transparent as possible

  • Collaborate with Department of Higher Education, legislative bodies, and foundations to impact the process

  • The process to achieve policy change was essential


Casey Sacks
Project Manager
Colorado Community College System
Phone: 720-858-2841

Casey Sacks
Project Manager
Colorado Community College System
Phone: 720-858-2841