Universities look to community colleges to handle remedial courses

The University of Oklahoma and Redlands Community College are launching a partnership in which Redlands will handle the university's remedial math courses. Oklahoma State University and Northern Oklahoma College have had a similar arrangement since 2003.
by Silas Allen Modified: May 4, 2013 at 12:16 am •  Published: May 5, 2013

“It's not within OU's mission to offer developmental courses,” Hamilton said.

When an OU student takes a remedial course from Redlands, it will show up on the student's transcript as transfer credit from Redlands. Students will also pay the considerably cheaper Redlands tuition rate for the courses, Hamilton said.

Otherwise, Hamilton said, the process will be seamless from the student's perspective — students will continue to take remedial courses at OU's Norman campus, they'll be able to enroll in the classes when they register for their other OU classes and they'll receive a single bill for both their OU and Redlands classes.

Bill Baker, vice president of academics at Redlands, said OU students enrolled in Redlands' remedial classes will have access to the college's tutoring program at any time of the day or night.

Any OU student can go to the university's tutoring center for assistance during the day. But if a student is stuck on quadratic equations, for example, at 2 a.m. on a Monday, that student has access to an online tutor who has a master's degree or higher, Baker said. The tutors help students work through problems using an online chat system, he said.

OU's relationship with Redlands isn't uncommon. Until recently, the University of Central Oklahoma contracted with Rose State College to handle UCO's developmental algebra courses.

Debbie Quirey, director of NOC's Stillwater campus, said the relationship between major universities and community colleges is a natural one. A university like OSU has a multifaceted role — it has duties in other areas, including outreach and research.

That isn't the case with community college, which focus only on instruction, Quirey said.

“I don't hire researchers,” Quirey said. “I'm looking for folks who can teach and do a really good job of it.”

by Silas Allen
General Assignment/Breaking News Reporter
Silas Allen is a news reporter for The Oklahoman. He is a Missouri native and a 2008 graduate of the University of Missouri.
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