Student Response to a Corequisite Pilot Program: A Retrospective
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This retrospective article presents the results of a pilot study on student perceptions of a corequisite model for developmental writing. Qualitative survey data was collected at the beginning, middle, and end of Fall 2013 at a large public university in central Texas. A total of 21 students participated in this study. Eleven students who were near the cut-off for the placement exam were enrolled in a first-semester composition course with other students who placed directly into first-semester composition. These 11 students also agreed to meet outside of the composition classroom at a set time for the corequisite course. Another ten students who were near the cut-off for the placement exam were placed in a traditional 16-week developmental writing course that served as a control. Responses were analyzed using coding practices outlined by Saldaña (2009), including initial coding, categorizing, and theming. Themes that emerged in the responses of students enrolled in the traditional 16-week developmental writing course included the following: (a) this course is pointless/a waste, (b) mismatch between placement and self-perception, and (c) transferability. Themes that emerged in the responses of students enrolled in the corequisite model included the following: (a) a lot is riding on success in the corequisite composition course, (b) unsure/nervous about expectations, and (c) improved self-efficacy at the end of the course. The major implication of this study is the importance of including student voices in the implementation of models for developmental education.