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Maine Community College System (MCCS) began work with the Charles A. Dana Center at The University of Texas at Austin to accelerate mathematics pathways and to improve student access and attainment by implementing initiatives oriented toward student success. Strategic efforts to achieve this goal will focus on:

  • Building awareness and understanding of mathematics pathways with key stakeholders;
  • Supporting institutional teams in developing implementation plans for mathematics pathways, including co–requisite models; and,
  • Convening a team of faculty leaders to build consensus for high–quality learning outcomes.

Initial supports for the work in Maine include: (1) a Fall 2018 system–wide kickoff with key stakeholders including faculty, administrators, student affairs personnel, and presidents to build awareness of mathematics pathways and to develop strategies for regional alignment with programs of study, (2) a Fall 2018 workshop to support institutional teams that are developing implementation plans for math pathways, including co–requisite courses, (3) a Spring 2019 workshop on co–requisite curriculum design, and (4) the convening of a working group with representative faculty members from MCCS campuses to develop common student learning outcomes for entry–level mathematics courses, including Statistics, Quantitative Reasoning, College Algebra, Technical Mathematics, and Math for Elementary School Teachers.

To learn more about our emerging work in Maine, see the highlights section below.


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Dr. Janet M. Sortor
“Math is one of the key barriers that impacts student persistence and completion of credentials. It's a huge issue. We are working very diligently to raise retention and completion rates. . . . Addressing math is one of our chief strategies.”
Chief Academic Officer, Maine Community College System



Stories of emerging work



Implementing mathematics pathways was a natural decision for Southern Maine Community College (SMCC), the largest institution in the state. As an Achieving the Dream (ATD) institution, SMCC was encouraged to look at the top 20 highest–enrollment courses and their pass rates. Developmental coursework and Algebra were among those courses, and the pass rate for algebra coursework “was 41% with a C or better,” according to Dr. Paul Charpentier, Interim Dean of Academic Affairs of SMCC. “That is not acceptable.”

In May 2017, stakeholders from SMCC attended the Minneapolis Designing Mathematics Pathways Convening, which was facilitated by the Dana Center and Achieving the Dream. Dr. Charpentier elaborates on how this workshop acted as a catalyst to moving forward with mathematics pathways:  

“[Math pathways] fits into our looking into math, our ATD framework—and it is the right time. We have been looking at math for two years, and last year in Minneapolis, we had a team of math faculty and several advisors attend and it was eye–opening. We came back to campus and that was the start of really getting things done with pathways.”

The work to build awareness of mathematics pathways and support institutional teams in developing implementation plans and curriculum — including co–requisite models — began with a May 2018 workshop in Portland. The two–day curriculum workshop focused on:

  • Gaining an understanding of the role of coursework in mathematics pathways aligned to programs of study;
  • Providing an orientation for SMCC faculty members who teach developmental coursework (Math 030) using material from the Dana Center’s co–requisite based Foundations of Mathematical Reasoning course; and,
  • Facilitating planning time with experienced instructors for the upcoming year.

As the largest institution in Maine,  it was important for SMCC to bring together experienced instructors to learn and plan for the upcoming year. “We are rolling out the new coursework for Math 030. We are really excited about the possibilities the math pathways implementation and the new curriculum for developmental education will bring to the success of our students,” explains SMCC Interim Dean of Academic Affairs Dr. Paul Charpentier.

Selected Resource:

Our Work at the State Level

Select a state to learn more about how local leaders are setting a vision for math pathways or read an analysis of math pathways work across multiple states.