Saint Xavier University

Chicago, IL | university | 3,800+ students

Product: MyLab Math
Course: Introduction to Algebra
Delivery method: Emporium
Study Plan usage: Companion Study Plan*
*Not included in the overall course pass rate calculation

In 2009, Saint Xavier University adopted MyLab™ Math in an emporium format for its Introduction to Algebra course. With features such as prerequisites and early-alert aids, faculty hoped to be able to catch student issues early and keep less-prepared students from moving forward until they mastered prior material, while allowing more-prepared students to accelerate, potentially through multiple courses in one semester. Faculty also hoped that the variety of personalized learning tools in MyLab would aid in student success.

“We’re able to catch student issues early through prerequisites, like the Companion Study Plan, to keep them moving forward until mastery is reached.”

—Christopher Riola, Adjunct Instructor, Saint Xavier University

How did they use the Study Plan?

Instructor Chris Riola’s course uses several personalization features in MyLab to ensure students reach a certain level of mastery of the learning objectives they don’t understand before being allowed to move forward in the course.

Students are required to earn at least 70% on chapter exams. Those earning mastery on their first attempt may immediately move on to the next chapter in the course. For students who do not reach the 70% level, a Companion Study Plan is automatically built in MyLab based on their performance on the exam. Once students complete their individualized Study Plans with 100% mastery, they may retake the chapter exam. If multiple attempts are necessary, the highest score on the chapter exam counts toward a student’s final score.

The results

Analysis was completed on students requiring multiple attempts to achieve the required 70% mastery on their chapter exams. These students were provided an individualized Companion Study Plan as their remediation and, after earning 100%, were able to retake the chapter exam. Data show that scores for students retaking chapter exams rose an average of 21 percentage points between their initial and final attempts.

Change in first attempt and final attempt scores

Figure 1. Change in First Attempt and Final Attempt Scores for Practice Tests (n=11) and Chapter Exams (n=7) in Fall 2016 and Spring 2017

“I was able to put more focus into specific areas of algebra I used to struggle in.”

—Student, Saint Xavier University