In fall 2013, Dwain Desbien and I taught MAT221/PHY121 learning community (LC). In spring 2014, 8 of these students went on to take MAT230 with me (calculus II). Here is some info on the LC students as compared to the non LC students.
- Communication skills were higher with LC students
- Students did better on application problems (67% of LC students did well with the physics application as compared to 53% that did not take the LC)
- Average on final exam was higher (73% average for LC and 66% for non LC)
- All of the LC students passed the class with a C or better while 5 non LC students either dropped the class or did not pass
Other things I noticed with the LC students is that they are more driven with their goals and future. More students come to see me for help outside of the classroom (internships, scholarships, advice on future courses, etc). I am not sure how I will ever be able to teach a traditional calculus class without having physics along side me. Students going onto Calc III with me will continue to be assessed and compared in fall 2014.