Do Effects of Quantway® Persist in the Following Year? A Multilevel Propensity Score Approach to Assessing Student College Mathematics Achievement

This report analyzes evidence from a new study assessing the effectiveness of Quantway 1 (QW1), a single-term developmental math course with a focus on quantitative reasoning. Quantway is one of the Pathways courses (along with Statway®) developed by a network of faculty and content experts convened by the Carnegie Foundation to accelerate the progress of college students through developmental mathematics with the aim of increasing success rates in earning college credit in mathematics.

This report is the sequel to an earlier study of the effectiveness of QW1, both of which applied a multilevel propensity score matching approach. The first study provided robust evidence that QW1 increases student success in fulfilling developmental math requirements and advances equity in student outcomes. The present study tracked student college math achievement through the year after QW1 enrollment. Results in this most recent analysis revealed that QW1 students were significantly more likely to enroll in credit-bearing college math courses within a year than their counterparts who followed traditional developmental math sequences were, and that while increasing subsequent math course taking, QW1 students demonstrated a comparable GPA. Significantly, QW1 effects were positive across all sex and race/ethnicity subgroups, as well as in nearly all classrooms and colleges. The current study provided additional empirical evidence of the persistence of QW1’s effectiveness for diverse student populations across varied classroom and institutional contexts. Directions for future work are discussed.

A portion of this study was accepted in Community College Review in May 2017, and the accepted version of the manuscript can be found here.