A Coordinated Strategy

The Dana Center Mathematics Pathways (DCMP) encompasses many strands of work spanning policy, institutional change, and course design in a coordinated strategy to:

  • Build momentum and legitimacy for mathematics pathways;
  • Identify effective practices for implementation;
  • Create enabling conditions for institutions and departments to implement effective practices; and
  • Offer tools and resources to support action at all levels of the system.

This resource site is designed to help people in diverse roles understand the DCMP and utilize our extensive resources:

  • Learn About math pathways and review Essential Ideas for a variety of different stakeholders.
  • Take Action with recommendations and resources specific to different levels of the system.
  • Explore Where We Work, including initiatives led by the Dana Center nationally and in more than a dozen states.
  • View Resources in our searchable library.

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History of the DCMP
History of the DCMP

The Dana Center Mathematics Pathways (DCMP) grew out of the collaboration between the Dana Center and the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching to develop the Statway™ and Quantway™ programs. This fruitful and productive joint enterprise helped the Dana Center better understand the challenges of implementing math pathways at scale. In particular, Uri Treisman, the executive director of the Dana Center, saw a need for increased attention to policy and coordinated action across an entire system. Consequently, the Dana Center formulated a state-level strategy that complements the institutional approach of Statway™ and Quantway™.

The Texas Association of Community Colleges (TACC) stepped forward to work collaboratively with the Dana Center to develop and refine this state-level approach. The Dana Center and TACC launched the New Mathways Project (NMP) in 2011. The reach and impact of the Dana Center Mathematics Model owes much to the leadership and commitment of the many Texas presidents, faculty, administrators, advisors, institutional researchers and student support staff who engaged in this early work.

Work at the state level led to a paradigm shift away from building pathways around a specific curriculum and course structure and towards defining pathways in terms of a set of organizing principles that allow room for local decision making and customization. This shift led to the development of the NMP Model, which is based on four principles. We at the Dana Center refer to this approach as "coherence without uniformity."

Through the work in Texas, we began expanding our view of whom math pathways should serve. While much of the early work focused on increasing success of developmental students at community colleges, we came to understand that all students would benefit from well-designed math pathways aligned to their programs of study regardless of their placement level or type of institution. This understanding led us to broaden our vision to one in which mathematics pathways are the normative practice across all sectors of higher education.

From the beginning of this work, the Dana Center was a strong advocate for math pathways nationally. In 2013, we formerly expanded our work outside of Texas through a collaboration with Georgia. We now work in over a dozen states and collaborate with a number of national organizations.

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In 2016, the New Mathways Project was rechristened the Dana Center Mathematic Pathways (DCMP) to reflect the changing landscape in which mathematics pathways are no longer a "new" or experimental concept. Mathematics pathways are now widely accepted as a critical component of modernizing undergraduate mathematics education and are sanctioned by mathematical professional associations, policy agencies and higher education organizations.

The DCMP is now an umbrella for a number of projects and strands of work at the national level and with different states to implement math pathways aligned with the DCMP model. It embraces work across higher education sectors and functions as we seek to provide faculty, staff, administrators and policy representatives with the resources, tools, and services necessary to implement high-quality mathematics pathways effectively.

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