The University of Wisconsin System has convened a newly appointed Remedial Education Work Group to examine policy, data, and best practices to advance a set of recommendations on which the System and the Board of Regents may act. Based on this group’s discussion of the 2012UW System Remedial Education Report, it was made clear that the UW System will need to take a deeper look at remedial education across all 26 campuses.
Specific to English
Changes in English Testing: Until 1999, the Center for Placement Testing reported two scores for each test taker, an English Placement Test (EPT) score and a Reading Comprehension Test (RCT) score. In practice, institutions generally gave more weight to the EPT. In 2000, the Center for Placement Testing began publishing the English Composite Score (ECS), which was a score derived from a combination of the English Placement Test and Reading Comprehension Test. In 2002, the test was shortened and renormed, creating the ENGL score. A reading sub-score, READ, was also provided.
Variations in Placement: While every test taker receives a sub-score in each area, there is significant variation among institutions as to which sub-scores are considered in placing a student. There are no two institutions in the UW System that use the same method for determining placement into remedial courses. Not all institutions use the UW System English placement test scores. Institutions also differ with respect to their definition of the level of the first credit-bearing course. Given the significance of these variances, there is a need to determine how institutions arrive at cut-off scores, and which academic departments participate in their development. To the extent that remedial placement has implications for students’ broader educational goals, input from a variety of institutional stakeholders in decisions concerning placement criteria may be justified.
You can find the full 2013
Remedial Education Review at http://www.uww.edu/documents/acadaff/remedialeducationreportbordec2013(0).pdf