GTF announces a grant in the amount of $156,790.92 to Texas State University-San Marcos Research Foundation in support of their project: Sealing the Pipeline: The Impact of Developmental Integrated Reading & Writing (IRW) Instruction on Education Outcomes for Students Enrolled in Texas Community Colleges.
Almost half of all higher education enrollment in the state of Texas is in community colleges and developmental education coursework is an important part of how community colleges support students who are underprepared for the demands of college-level reading and writing. However, a considerable percentage of students who begin their community college careers taking developmental reading and writing classes do not complete a college credential or degree, exposing “leaks” in the postsecondary education pipeline. In 2012, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board mandated that the highest levels of developmental reading and writing in every public institution of higher education in Texas be merged into one class, “Integrated Reading & Writing (IRW)” (Texas Administrative Code, Title 19, Part 1, Section 4.62). The purpose of this project is to measure the effects of this mandate on student education short- and long-term outcomes, including persistence and success in postsecondary education, and to provide evidence-based directions for successful implementation of IRW coursework in community-college contexts. In short, the project seeks to answer two questions: To what extent is IRW effective in Texas – does IRW work? and What are the elements of successful curricula that can be replicated across community colleges – what makes IRW work?