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High school tests prepare students to earn average grades in college

High school students might not be prepared to earn higher than a C when they get to college.
The high school benchmark for measuring college success predicts that students would have a 75 percent chance of earning a C in a college-level class, according to Sean Corrigan, Mountain View High School assistant principal.
The benchmark is measured by a series of tests students take starting freshman year. These tests are designed to prepare students for the rigors of college academics, explained Corrigan. These series of tests are called EXPLORE, PLAN, and the ACT.
Individuals who meet the benchmark in a particular subject on the ACT,  should then be able to receive a C or better in a college class, Corrigan explained.
Students’ grades in college are determined by how much effort students put into the class, according to Corrigan.
“It is up to the individual,” Corrigan said, “and how much time they have to put into the class.”
Another way high schools are helping to prepare students for college is by offering advanced placement classes, Corrigan explained.
“These courses help with college readiness,” Corrigan said, “as well as to help get students used to the rigors of college, by introducing them to the amount of studying, writing and reading criteria needed for college courses.”
Once students get to college, there are many services available to assist them in reaching their educational goals, according to Dianna McGuiness, academic advisor at Oregon State University-Cascades.
“We offer what we call a ‘learning community’ to help first-year students ease into the college experience,” McGuiness said. “We also have an advisor who works specifically with first-year students here.”
It is important to introduce students to the college atmosphere and options early in their education, McGuiness explained.
“We start outreach in the community as early as middle school to help students see this as a possibility,” McGuiness said, “and encourage them along the way.”

–Molly Svendsen

The Broadside




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