Productive Persistence

Many students enter developmental mathematics courses with negative mindsets that they can’t do math or that they are not a math person. Productive persistence is a key part of the Pathways that focuses on addressing these beliefs to help students see themselves as capable of mathematical success and develop the strategies to do so.

Starting with existing research, faculty and researchers within the Pathways work together to design, test, and refine interventions to promote student engagement and success. They started by identifying factors that lead students to success in developmental math course. Personal and psychological attributes of students who successfully navigate development math include a belief in their potential as math students, a willingness to face challenges or failure, and relationships with their classmates.

Armed with this knowledge, faculty teamed up with leading psychology professors to combine academic research with practitioners’ expertise. Faculty members and researchers across the country work together as a Networked Improvement Community to design, test, and adapt promising ideas to address the needs of students taking developmental mathematics. Aided by researchers and Carnegie staff, faculty utilize Pathways student data to build an evidentiary basis for scaling potential psychological interventions to all Statway and Quantway classes.