The Personalized Precalculus Program (PPP) at Texas A&M University is a three-week, online program designed to improve the success rates of prospective students who will be taking Calculus I. Students who obtain a score in the range of 14 to 21 (out of 33) on the Math Placement Exam (MPE) are strongly encouraged to enroll in the program. The cost of enrollment for the summer 2017 session is $200.
Why the PPP?
Studies have shown that students who pass their first calculus class with a grade of at least a C, are much more likely to graduate and earn their engineering or science degree in four years. Students who earn a score of 22 (out of 33) on the Texas A&M Math Placement Exam (MPE) have a 70 percent chance of obtaining a grade of C, or better, in their first calculus course, and thus are likely to earn their degree in four years. For students whose MPE score is less than 22, the statistics are not as favorable. A student, for example, whose score is an 18 (out of 33) on the MPE has a 55.9 percent chance of obtaining a grade of C, or better, in their first calculus course and thus, they are at risk of not obtaining their degree on time. These statistics, and the desire to position students for better success in college mathematics, are the driving forces behind the Texas A&M Department of Mathematics Personalized Precalculus Program (PPP).
The PPP has proven to raise student’s MPE scores by approximately 6 points, thus positioning them to enroll in Calculus 1 one semester sooner.
The strength of the PPP is the synchronous, online personal tutoring sessions. For each 2-hour online session, a math tutor leads a small group of students in a virtual math class. These sessions help to clear student’s misconceptions, fill gaps, strengthen the student’s mathematical foundation, and help move each student to higher levels of mathematical understanding. The 2-hour online sessions are “live” and interactive. Each student has an opportunity to ask questions, discuss math content, solve math problems, and answer questions posed by the tutor. The student’s tutor is an experienced math school teacher who has been trained in all forms of technology for the program.
INDEPENDENT WORK OPPORTUNITIES
Students enrolled in the Personalized Precalculus Program will have access to high quality videos and review sheets they can access when they need. Tutors will assign individual students problems from the review sheets based upon each student’s individual needs. The review sheets and videos are accessed through the TAMU Learning Management System (eCampus.tamu.edu) and will be available to the student for an entire academic year.