Implementing Multiple Measures
The City University of New York (CUNY), like many other community college systems, was placing a large proportion of their first-year students in developmental education by using a single placement measure such as the ACCUPLACER test. Research shows that broadening placement measures to include high school grade point average can increase the number of students who should have access to gateway courses. With that in mind, CUNY’s Office of Academic Affairs (OAA) announced a change to its placement policy in December 2018 with full implementation beginning in spring of 2020.
The new policy (OAA-19-01) requires the use of a multiple-measures proficiency index instead of ACCUPLACER for placement of students into gateway courses. The proficiency index considers three measures: SAT scores, New York State Regents scores, and students’ overall high school grade point average (GPA). The index provides a score that is based on a logistic regression model, which is a prediction of the student’s probability of success at credit-bearing math or English courses. The index places more weight on an applicant’s high school grade point average. For math, the three proficiency levels are Proficient (60 or higher), Light Developmental Need (between 40 and 59), and Deep Developmental Need (below 40). This Points of Interest shows how CUNY implemented a new placement policy to identify students who should have access to gateway level college courses.