Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Postsecondary Success

The Multiple Measures placement system, uses high school achievement data, such as GPA and math courses taken, instead of traditional standardized assessment tests to place students into English and math courses. This approach can provide successful placement into up to one course higher than typical test results indicate, including accelerated courses. Using the Multiple Measures, the California Community College system found that significantly more students proceed through their developmental education and succeed at higher rates in their first credit-bearing college-level courses.

Additionally, a report by the Community College Research Center, determined that placement exams are more likely to predict which students will do well in coursework than predict students who will fail. As such, the report found that when colleges use either the best placement exam scores or high school GPA to place students, it lowered the remedial rate by 8 to 11 percentage points, while also reducing placement errors and increasing college level success rates.


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