Remedial courses right where they should be
Published: Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, October 2, 2012 01:10
The issue: Zero-level courses are no more after spring 2013
Our stance: Community college is the place for remedial courses
The state of Indiana has mandated that remedial courses no longer be offered in Indiana’s state universities. See “State mandates reallocate remedial courses” by Andrea Drac on page 1. This means that zero-level courses currently offered at PUC must be taken at Ivy Tech Community College after spring 2013.
There is only one math course now at PUC in the remedial level, Beginning Algebra. However, there are plenty of zero-level English courses. These courses are mostly high school level, but some are at the elementary and middle school level. If someone is going to college, they should at least be able to do math and English at a middle school (and hopefully high school) level. At least these remedial courses are still being offered at community colleges and then able to be transferred to PUC.
It is understandable that not all people are “English people” or “math people,” but it is essential to be able to do basic math functions and form some sort of coherent writing in day-to-day life. Sure, many students at PUC are non-traditional and may not have been in high school for many years. However, these people will just have to attend Ivy Tech at a cheaper tuition rate for a time to get to the level they need to be to take 100-level classes. This is not to say that all non-traditional students, or even the majority, need remedial classes. Nor is it to say that the only people who need remedial classes are non-traditional students.
This switch is really setting apart community colleges and state universities. The differences between Ivy Tech and PUC have always been evident, but now even more than ever no one can say that PUC is a community college. PUC follows mandates for state schools just like our parent university Purdue West Lafayette. Community college and commuter college are two very different things.
So, people should realize the difference. Perhaps many people should start off at Ivy Tech to get their beginning classes out of the way. Even those who do not need to take remedial courses may want to start out at Ivy Tech. Cheaper tuition sounds great while people figure out what they want to do with their lives. Be sure to pay attention to which classes will transfer and which classes will not, though. You don’t want to get stuck wasting money on classes you can’t use to finish your degree.