Webinar Recording— Quantitative Leap! A Gateway to College: Rethinking Postsecondary Mathematics

In partnership with LearningWorks

In partnership with LearningWorks

The Opportunity Institute and LearningWorks are excited to have hosted the first webinar in a series exploring how math policies can support transitions to and through college hosted by The Opportunity Institute Fellow Pamela Burdman.

Quantitative Leap!  Webinar 1
A Gateway to College: Rethinking Postsecondary Mathematics

May 25, 11am – 12:15 Pacific (2pm – 3:15pm Eastern)

Mathematics plays a fundamental role as a gateway to higher education. Besides the general education mathematics courses that students typically take to earn a degree, a large proportion of students are assigned to postsecondary remedial math courses when they arrive in college, courses that may delay or deter their progress through college.

In early 2013, the University System of Georgia formed a statewide task force charged with improving success rates in the gateway mathematics courses that are required for graduation in its two- and four-year institutions. Similarly, later that year, Ohio’s Board of Regents formed a statewide steering committee to develop expectations and processes designed to produce mathematics pathways that enhance student success. Both states are now in the process of implementing the recommendations of those groups.

Use the audio player above to hear about how college and university mathematics faculty in the two states are revising practices in postsecondary remedial and general education mathematics aimed at positioning all students to succeed in college and beyond. A California leader in mathematics curricular design will engage the panelists in dialogue about the implications of their work for other states.


Pamela Burdman, Education Policy Analyst; Fellow, Opportunity Institute


Joan Leitzel, Professor Emeritus of Mathematics, Ohio State University; Former President, University of New Hampshire; Chair, Ohio Mathematics Steering Committee

Luis Casian, Chair, Department of Mathematics, Ohio State University; Founder, Ohio Mathematics Chairs Network

Malcolm Adams, Chair, Department of Mathematics, University of Georgia; Member, Task Force on the Role of Mathematics in College Completion

German Vargas, Chair, Department of Mathematics, College of Coastal Georgia; Chair, University System of Georgia Ad Hoc Steering Committee on Transforming College Mathematics Implementation Plan; Member, Task Force on the Role of Mathematics in College Completion

In Conversation With:

Katherine Stevenson, Professor of Mathematics and Director, Developmental Mathematics, California State University-Northridge; Co-Chair, California State University Quantitative Reasoning Task Force

The Quantitative Leap! Series is an outgrowth of the Quantitative Leap policy brief by Pamela Burdman recommending three strategies for ensuring that math policies support college success: (1) ensure that quantitative reasoning requirements are evidence-based and reasonably consistent across educational systems, (2) rely on evidence to ensure validity and efficacy of placement tests and measures, and (3) improve quality, availability, and variety of high school courses that prepare students to be college ready in math. The brief and webinar series have been supported by the Irvine Foundation, College Futures Foundation, and the California Education Policy Fund.

The Opportunity Institute is a non-profit organization that promotes social mobility and equity by improving outcomes from early childhood through early career. We focus on education and the related social policies that make true educational opportunity possible.

LearningWorks is an Oakland-based partnership that aims to strengthen student achievement in community colleges by facilitating, disseminating, and funding practitioner-informed recommendations for changes at the system and classroom levels, as well as infusing these strategies with statewide and national insights.