Developmental Math

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What is the Problem?

Over 60 percent of all students entering community colleges in the United States are required to complete developmental courses and a staggering 70 percent of these students never complete the required mathematics courses, blocking their way to higher education credentials and with them, a wide array of technical and related careers. Traditionally, only 5 percent of students earn college math credit within a year of continuous enrollment. In its first two years, over 50% students enrolled Carnegie's Pathways have achieved college math credit within a year.

What is Carnegie's Solution?

Recognizing the grave consequences for both individual opportunity and the nation’s social and economic well being, Carnegie has engaged networks of faculty members, researchers, designers, students, and content experts in the creation of two new pathways, one in statistics and the other in quantitative reasoning. It is Carnegie’s belief that students will have greater motivation to succeed and persist if their mathematics study is engaging, meaningful, relevant and useful. Take our short course to experience the difference of Pathways lessons. 

Hear from our students (video)

The Pathways



Statway® is a one-year pathway focused on statistics, data analysis, and causal reasoning that combines college-level statistics with developmental math. 

Learn more about Statway »


Quantway® is a pathway focused on quantitative reasoning that fulfills developmental requirement with the aim of preparing students for success in college-level mathematics.

Learn more about Quantway »








The strength of Pathways is not just in its curriculum, but in its engagement of students, faculty, administrators, educational researchers, and program designers. These groups collaborate as part of a Networked Improvement Community (NIC) to improve the program and further increase student success. Pathways help students to see themselves as capable of mathematical success through interventions focused on non-cognitive factors and the development of language and literacy skills. In addition, Pathways instruction utilizes a pedagogical model that supports ambitious mathematics learning. Through the Advancing Quality Teaching component of the Pathways, faculty are supported to develop these pedagogical practices using innovative approaches to faculty engagement and development. The work within classrooms is supported by Carnegie’s Rapid Analytics Hub—providing empirical data about student-, faculty-, campus-, and network-wide performance. Learn more about the instructional system.

The Networked Improvement Community


Initially, 30 colleges from across the United States participated in this Networked Improvement Community (NIC). Because of the extraordinarily positive outcomes, a strong interest has emerged across the nation from both community colleges and educational researchers to join and broaden the work of Statway and Quantway.  We have now grown the network to 49 institutions in fourteen states with over 4,573 students currently or previously enrolled in the Pathways.

To promote consistently high performance as the project scales and to ensure effective implementation at scale across contexts, Carnegie has organized NICs to strengthen mathematics teaching and learning at the college level. It is the Foundation’s intent that over time the NICs will promote continuous improvement strategies throughout their member institutions.


Carnegie Corporation of New York, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, Lumina Foundation and The Kresge Foundation have joined in partnership with the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching to invest $14 million in this work for the first two years. All these foundations share a commitment to expanding college readiness and furthering student retention and graduation rates.


Survey software for Carnegie's work with the Networked Improvement Communities is powered by Qualtrics.